Labour Party deputy leader Chris Cardona has been moved out of the economy ministry by Prime Minister Robert Abela.
The move has been confirmed by people close to Cardona who told MaltaToday that ministry officials have been told to clear their stuff by tomorrow morning.
It remains unclear what role Cardona will play in Abela’s Cabinet with persistent rumours suggesting that he was offered the tourism ministry.
Cardona was twice summoned to Castille by Abela. Each time, Cardona stuck to the script, insisting Cabinet appointments were the Prime Minister’s prerogative.
Cardona was embroiled in controversy in the previous legislature when murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia had alleged that he was present at a brothel in Germany while on an official visit there. He denied the accusations and filed libel cases against the journalist, which were never continued on procedural matters.
Important mobile phone location data that could prove or disprove Cardona’s presence at the brothel and which was secured by the magistrate in the libel case, never made it in public after the case dropped.
However, the ongoing public inquiry into the Caruana Galizia murder has asked for the data to be included in the acts of the inquiry.
During the leadership campaign, Abela had said that he would expect his ministers to act in an ethically correct way and lead by example when asked whether he would keep a minister who goes with a prostitute.