Five top officials dodge Daphne Project Q&A

Simon Busuttil will sit for interview on new revelations

Five key players cited so far in the Daphne Project have refused to answer requests, or backed out of an interview on this week’s edition of Times Talk.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, minister Konrad Mizzi and chief of staff Keith Schembri were sent an invitation to take part in the weekly Times of Malta online programme but none of them replied to the request.

Economy Minister Chris Cardona’s office said they are not interested in an interview “this time round”.

Police commissioner Lawrence Cutajar declined the invitation when told what the interview was about, saying the matter is the subject of a magisterial inquiry.

Former Opposition leader and now spokesman for good governance Simon Busuttil will field questions instead.

The Daphne Project is a collaboration by 18 international media organisations dedicated to continuing the work of slain journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

They include The New York Times, The Guardian, La Repubblica, Le Monde, Süddeutsche Zeitung and Times of Malta.

The first in a series of stories published as part of the Daphne Project quoted witnesses claiming Dr Cardona had been seen drinking with one of the three men facing charges of murdering Ms Caruana Galizia.

Another story reported that no politicians had been interviewed in the Caruana Galizia murder probe while another set of revelations connected Dubai company 17 Black with Dr Mizzi and Mr Schembri.

The most recent story linked Pilatus Bank to a web of multi-million holdings by the Azeri elite.

The interview with Dr Busuttil, his first since stepping down as Nationalist Party leader, will be uploaded tomorrow.

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