Standards Committee does not agree about witnesses in Rosianne Cutajar’s case

The Parliamentary Committee for Standards in Public Life today voted for the report about Rosianne Cutajar, compiled by the Standards Commissioner, George Hyzler, to be handed over to the Tax Commissioner.

In his motivation in favour of the motion, the Speaker said he was voting for the Tax Commissioner not only to be given a copy of the Hyzler report, but to also be given what has emerged so far during the proceedings of the Standards Committee.

The Speaker said that he wants to see the conclusions of the investigation by the Tax Commissioner before proceeding with further witnesses, because Dr Hyzler said he would have stopped his own investigation if he knew that there was an ongoing investigation by the Tax Commissioner.

However the.Opposition did not agree with this motion as proposed, because it said it does not agree that the work of the Committee should stop if the Tax Commissioner declares that he is still investigating.

The Opposition accused the Speaker of making a U-turn, and this led to an argument during the sitting.

The Speaker repeatedly declared that his position is that the Committee should first listen to what the Tax Commissioner has to say and from there he needs to decide whether more witnesses need to be called.

The Opposition insisted that it wants a guarantee that it will have the chance to call more witnesses, apart from the Tax Commissioner, and therefore it voted against the motion. The Government MPs voted in favour of the motion which passed with the Speaker’s casting vote.