Fearne expresses ‘serious concern’ as he disassociates himself from Vitals deal

Miguela Xuereb

The National Audit Office’s damning report on the way Vitals gained a concession on three public hospitals is a source of ‘serious concern,’ according to Health Minister Chris Fearne.

In a brief statement on social media, Fearne emphasised that he was not involved in the negotiations at all, and that he was not even informed about the process. At the time, Fearne was Parliamentary Secretary for Health, with Konrad Mizzi then serving as Health and Energy Minister.

B’referenza għar-rapport tal-Awditur Ġenerali dwar il-Vitals, nistqar dan li ġej: Ir-rapport jindika tħassib serju….

Posted by Chris Fearne on Tuesday, July 7, 2020

 “I declare that I was absolutely not involved in any negotiations mentioned by the Auditor General which may have happened before the request for proposals was made, and neither was I informed about them,” Fearne said.

“The report confirms this clearly. In fact, I never even knew about the existence of a memorandum of understanding,” he added.

The minister also made a point of highlighting that the Finance Ministry had also not been involved in the request for proposals which led to Vitals being awarded the deal. Earlier this evening, PN leader Adrian Delia insisted that Finance Minister Edward Scicluna – along with disgraced former PM Joseph Muscat – should shoulder political responsibility over the matter.