Toni Abela

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Toni Abela - Labour Party Deputy Leader for Party Affairs
Toni Abela
Deputy Leader of the Labour Party
Party Affairs
In office
13 June 2008 – 21 March 2016
Leader Joseph Muscat
Preceded by Michael Falzon
Succeeded by Konrad Mizzi
Personal details
Born 1 July 1957
Political party Labour Party
(1987-1989, 1998-present)
Democratic Alternative
(1989-1998)
Spouse(s) Marisa
Children 3
Religion Roman Catholicism

Toni Abela (born July 2, 1957) is a Maltese politician who was elected as Deputy Leader (Party Affairs) of Partit Laburista in June 2008.[1] A lawyer by profession, he is known for his 30-year track record on accountability, transparency and good governance.[2] He co-drafted Malta's Whistle Blower Act, Party Financing Act and the law that removed politician's legal protection from cases of abuse and corruption.[3] He has been nominated by the Government of Malta to serve as a member of the European Court of Auditors.

Political career[edit]

Labour Party Deputy Leader (Party Affairs) (2008 - 2016)[edit]

He was elected Deputy Leader for Party Affairs on 12 June 2008. Apart from his general responsibilities of running and managing the Party's internal affairs, he also monitored 65 political Labour Party outlets. He also set standards of good governance to 39 Labour Local Councils and saw that these standards are upheld. During his tenure, Labour Party went through radical changes at all levels of organisation.

  • Attack on Toni Abela during 2013 Electoral Campaign

Toni Abela was the main target by the Nationalist Party during the 2013 General Election campaign[4] which saw the Labour Party win the election with a record number of votes, a difference of 11.4% between both parties. The Nationalist Party claimed that Toni Abela prevented the barman of a Labour Party club from being investigated by police, following alleged cocaine use in the bar, while at work.[4] Following the election, there was universal agreement that it was a simple dirty political trick during an electoral campaign, with the Nationalist Party itself claiming in the post-mortem of the electoral result that the attack on Toni Abela contributed to its defeat.[5] During the electoral campaign itself, the Police Commissioner stated that there was no case against Toni Abela.[6]

Rather than tarnishing his reputation, the attack revealed Toni Abela's honourable course which saw him firing the guy and refusing to take him back, even when he started to make puerile excuses. Toni Abela took no chances and unhesitatingly fired the person concerned and refused to take him back.[7]

President (1988 - 1989)[edit]

In 1988, he was elected President of the Labour Party and served until 1989 when he had to resign from the party after taking a stand against corruption and criminal elements within the party.[2]

Co-founder of Malta's Green Party (1989)[edit]

That same year, he co-founded Alternattiva Demokratika, Malta's Green Party, together with the then Labour Party whip Wenzu Mintoff, espousing environmental issues, equality of gender, political transparency and a fairer electoral system with the introduction of a national quota to allow small political parties to be represented in Parliament on the line of the German model. Campaigned in favour of the introduction of the Whistle Blower Act, Freedom of Information Act, the abolishment of the institute of prescription in case of abuse of power and corruption by public officials and the need of a Party Financing Law.

Deputy Mayor of Hamrun (1993)[edit]

In 1993 he was elected as Deputy Mayor of Hamrun, a major town in Malta, and was responsible for law enforcement and management of the citizens' complaints bureau. He also introduced the first bye-laws and established the first local Court.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ltd, Allied Newspapers. "Video: Anglu Farrugia, Toni Abela elected MLP deputy leaders". Times of Malta. Retrieved 2016-02-03. 
  2. ^ a b "Toni Abela nominated to European Court of Auditors". MaltaToday.com.mt. Retrieved 2016-02-03. 
  3. ^ TX Current Affairs (2011-12-13), Justice Reform - interview with Dr Toni Abela, retrieved 2016-02-03 
  4. ^ a b "COCAINE DEALING AT A LABOUR PARTY CLUB - and Labour deputy leader Toni Abela covers it up. LISTEN TO THE VOICE RECORDING HERE. - Daphne Caruana Galizia's Notebook | Running Commentary". Daphne Caruana Galizia's Notebook | Running Commentary. Retrieved 2016-02-04. 
  5. ^ Ltd, Allied Newspapers. "Dissecting the PN's dramatic defeat". Times of Malta. Retrieved 2016-02-04. 
  6. ^ "Police commissioner found no wrongdoing in Abela tape - Mallia". MaltaToday.com.mt. Retrieved 2016-02-04. 
  7. ^ "The government we deserve - The Malta Independent". www.independent.com.mt. Retrieved 2016-02-04.