Repubblika welcomes the decision of the Industrial Tribunal headed by Chairperson Anna Mallia which found that when the FIAU fired Jonathan Ferris during the trial period of his employment it committed an act of discrimination. Repubblika also welcomes the compensation ordered by the Tribunal to make up for a small part of the torture that the government put through and continues to put through Jonathan Ferris simply because he did his job.
A few hours before he was fired a few days after the 2017 election, the then Minister Edward Scicluna told the press that the FIAU reports with evidence of corruption involving Keith Schembri and Konrad Mizzi and about the Bank Pilatus were written to be in the hands of the media. That day Edward Scicluna tried to discredit the evidence against his colleagues by alleging that the FIAU investigators fabricated evidence and gave it to the media or the Opposition. After this public statement of the minister, Jonathan Ferris ended up without a job.
Jonathan Ferris is still facing prosecution, another part of the campaign of intimidation carried out on him by the government. This is in addition to the fact that when he wanted to reveal what he found out when he was an investigator, the government denied him whistleblower protection. Not only that. A government MP warned him from Parliament that if Jonathan Ferris were to, in the process of applying for whistleblower protection, reveal something he found out when he was at the FIAU, he would be sent to prison before his application would be considered.
The persecution of Jonathan Ferris must stop immediately and the police must drop the case against him. If he still wants to testify he should be given all the protection of a whistleblower.
Edward Scicluna, who tried to discredit an investigator of conscience on behalf of the government, should leave the public function he has. It is truly a shame that a man whose vileness is now confirmed by a Tribunal, is today the Governor of the Central Bank. Kenneth Farrugia (today MFSA Chief Executive) and Alfred Zammit (today FIAU Acting Director) who illegally sacked Jonathan Ferris in an act of discrimination and political vindication should be removed from their positions.
Now that the Tribunal has found that this injustice has been done, it is not enough to pay compensation to the victim from our taxes. The minister and the officials who committed this injustice must also pay for what they did.