On Friday, local LinkedIn users were surprised to see a notification to welcome a familiar face to the professional networking platform, as former Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat seeks to build his personal brand after departing from politics (so far).
He had resigned as Prime Minister in January 2020 following mass protests after his office was implicated in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.
Dr Muscat, whose chief of staff Keith Schembri and close associate Konrad Mizzi have been investigated for corruption related to the Electrogas project, the sale of Maltese passports, and the controversial privatisation of three state hospitals, is offering management consulting through the platform, both in person and remotely.
His profile points to his tenure as Malta’s Prime Minister between 2013 and 2020, highlighting the ten consecutive national, European and local elections he led the Labour Party to win in record majorities.
It touts his leadership of the Presidency of the European Union and as the Commonwealth Chair-in-Office, positions held by virtue of his status as head of the Maltese Government during these events.
Dr Muscat adds that his successes in the first European Parliamentary elections in Malta in 2004, and the roles he held within the EP, but does not include his prior experience as a journalist with the Labour Party’s media house.
“He currently works as an advisor and lives in Malta,” reads the profile.
Dr Muscat still enjoys wide support among many in the PL, and has resurfaced in recent weeks to campaign for general election candidates both old and new.
In January, police raided Dr Muscat’s Burmarrad home in connection with payments received from Accutor AG, the Swiss company which had worked with Steward Healthcare, which purchased the hospital concession from VGH, the original concessionaires who had no prior experience in healthcare.
In November 2021, Times of Malta revealed that Dr Muscat received around €60,000 from Accutor AG as a “consultancy fee”, shortly after handing the reins of Castille to his successor and former legal advisor, Robert Abela.
Ms Caruana Galizia’s son, Matthew Caruana Galizia has insisted that the actual contract is actually worth over half a million, with €15,000 to be collected every month by the former Prime Minister for 36 months, although payments seem to have stopped when Swiss bank UBS flagged and closed Accutor AG’s accounts.
This article says Muscat received €60,000. This is half the story.— Matthew Caruana Galizia (@mcaruanagalizia) January 21, 2022
What he got is a contract worth €540,000: €15,000 per month for a minimum of 36 months.
The payments only paused when UBS flagged them and closed Accutor's accounts. https://t.co/XN2HHAO7i8
Steward, VGH and the Government are embroiled in ongoing legal cases.
Dr Muscat strongly denies any wrongdoing and has said that he has acted differently to previous prime ministers.
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