Repubblika expresses its regret and condemnation for the comments made by MP Justin Schembri who listed the nouns “dirt”, “shabbiness” and “Indian” in one list. This is a statement that deprives humans of their human dignity, placing them in a category with other objects without a soul. No human should be considered “dirt” or compared with it simply because they belong to another race or group of human beings.

From a private individual, this would be an ignorant comment, the result of racial hatred and prejudice.

From a politician, MP and aspirant minister of education, Justin Schembri’s comments are an explicit, discriminatory and racist threat.

When he was given the opportunity by journalists to repair part of the damage he caused, Justin Schembri continued to insist that his racist comment was justified.

Unjustified. Racism and those who embrace it do not have a legitimate place in politics in a democracy. We condemn this behaviour without reservation.