The fallout from last year's Panama papers leak could spell the end of Joseph Muscat's premiershipby Charlie Askew / June 1, 2017 / Leave a comment
The most interesting election in Europe is about to take place—and it’s not in the UK.
A snap election has been called in Malta on June 3—a year ahead of schedule—following sensational corruption allegations against the Labour Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.
The once wildly popular government is tottering, following a series of scandals prompted by the Panama leaks almost exactly a year ago.
Even so, in contrast to other European elections, no extremists stand to gain control. Instead, in this fervent democracy—which has one of the highest voter turnout rates in Europe—the choice is as it has always been in the 50 years since independence from Britain: the Partit Laburista (Labour) on the centre-left, and the Partit Nazzjonalista (Nationalists) on the centre-right.
But the corruption allegations have set the tone for a campaign of bitter, internecine warfare.
Politics in Malta may be many things – parochial, patriarchal, patronage-based – but it is never boring.