Gatt: I would be happy to publish statement I gave the police; PM does not rule out inquiry

Dr Gatt speaking outside police headquarters.

Updated 12.38 p.m.

Infrastructure Minister Austin Gatt had a meeting of over an hour with the Police Commissioner and gave the police a statement in connection with their inquiries into corruption in oil procurement.

Dr Gatt was seen arriving at police headquarters in his official car at about 11am.

In a brief statement after he left police HQ, Dr Gatt said he had given a statement to the police.

He told I will be happy to publish the statement I gave the police, but I was asked by the police not to in order not to hinder investigations. I will have no problem in publishing once the police tell me it is OK."

Last week Dr Gatt said he would be happy to reply to any questions which the police may have on oil procurement. He insisted he was not personally involved in oil procurement decisions.

Also this morning, Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi did not rule out calling an inquiry into oil procurement following allegations of corruption.

Replying to reporters' questions after opening a day centre for the elderly in Kirkop, Dr Gonzi said he called on police to investigate immediately after the first allegations surfaced. At this stage the police should be allowed to carry out their investigations.

If necessary, he added, an inquiry would also be held at a later stage.

A former member of the oil procurement committee, Frank Sammut, has been questioned by police in connection with commission he allegedly received from the sale of oil to Enemalta.

PBS reported yesterday that other businessmen have also been questioned by the police into alleged links to oil sales.

Dr Gonzi replies to questions on the oil procurement investigations.Dr Gonzi replies to questions on the oil procurement investigations.

Dr Gonzi also dismissed Labour Party criticism of the PN's costings of its electoral pledges. Reacting to the comments made at a press conference by MEP Edward Scicluna, Dr Gonzi said Prof Scicluna was the same person who had said that student stipends should be stopped and and people should also pay for health services. 

He said that when he heard such assessments, he felt that Labour was moving in the wrong direction.

He believed that the PN proposals were sustainable, and it was worth pointing out that the European Commission had removed Malta from the excessive deficit procedure, a fact which the Labour Party tried to hide.

Minister Austin Gatt's car outside police HQ. Photo: Kurt SansoneMinister Austin Gatt's car outside police HQ. Photo: Kurt Sansone

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