To be clear The New People is a GSLP rag and it is rumoured that Fabian Picardo writes many of the articles himself. So get ready for the next episode of the Gibraltar political Punch n Judy show.
HASSAN NAHON SETS OUT TO UNDO GIBRALTAR’S FINANCIAL SERVICES SECTOR
HASSAN NAHON & AZOPARDI PLAY CENSOR
Hassan Nahon hates being reminded of her reference to ‘arms deals’ at Riggs Bank
It is clear that the approach of the GSD to press freedom has not changed since the ugly days when they were in office. Additionally, it is clear that Ms Hassan Nahon (who we are pleased to see reads us so closely that we are thinking of offering her fees as our proof reader) will feel very comfortable when she finally changes her political shirt once again and goes back to her original political homes in the GSD. In fact, when Mr Azopardi and Ms Hassan Nahon finally consummate their merger, one of the areas where they will, no doubt, show political convergence is their desire to silence this newspaper.
What is less clear is if the GSD of Azopardi & Bossino, Clinton and Phillips can agree with Hassan Nahon’s references to the financial services industry in Gibraltar as morally bankrupt.
The track record of the GSD is clear. In their time in office, they refused to invite The New People to any press conferences. They refused to recognise that, although we are a registered newspaper, we should have the same access as all others to media facilities. At the same time that the GSD were paying the GSD’s SEVEN DAYS newspaper up to £100,000 of taxpayers’ money in one year, they denied the New People official government advertising.
The GSD also tried to censor a Channel 4 documentary under Sir Peter Caruana. The documentary was recording part of HM the Queen’s first visit to Gibraltar. The GSD Chief Minister insisted that, if Channel 4 interviewed any Spaniards, the Chief Minister would not grant an interview. That was actually aired on UK television at Prime Time.
More recently, Roy Clinton has written to the Chronicle telling them what words to refer to in reporting (re whether a financial product was a ‘mortgage’ or an ‘investment’).
HASSAN NAHON CENSORSHIP
Ms Hassan Nahon has even tweeted telling GBC what their headlines should be (in respect of a donation by the Government to a charity at Christmas time).
In fact, Ms Hassan Nahon is leading a campaign of censorship against this newspaper. Of course, that campaign has only begun when she has not liked the things we have written about her. She used to love our references to her sitting on a ‘Rocket Chair’ in Parliament. She has not, however, liked us reminding people of her own words, in an article in the Gibraltar Magazine in January 2017, about the arms deals she knows sensitive details of. from her time at Riggs Bank.
This newspaper is not for one moment suggesting that Ms Hassan Nahon is, or ever was, an arms dealer. What we believe, whether she likes it or not, is that Ms Hassan Nahon is a political hypocrite.
Most recently Ms Hassan Nahon has said that she believes that the financial services is a ‘morally bankrupt industry, with inherent risks attached to it,’ and that Gibraltar should ‘reduce our dependence on … tax avoidance’. In fact, however, when she was working at Riggs Bank, Ms Hassan Nahon was herself working in that industry. By her own admission she was privy to a lot of details of the arms deals in question, but that the information is so sensitive that she could not provide more details to the journalist who interviewed her. Ms Hassan Nahon said, in her own words, that she ‘felt very comfortable’ in that environment.
This is a demonstration that Ms Hassan Nahon is a total political hypocrite. She can praise her role in working in the financial services industry, including exposure to sensitive information about arms deals etc. Yet she can condemn the whole financial services industry in Gibraltar and tarnish it with one brush stroke as ‘morally bankrupt’.
It seems to this newspaper that ‘moral bankruptcy’ is actually more evident in Ms Hassan Nahon tarnishing a whole industry with the same brush.
It seems to this newspaper that ‘moral bankruptcy’ is actually more evident in Ms Hassan Nahon trying to silence this newspaper because we remind her of her own words in 2017.
It seems to this newspaper that ‘moral bankruptcy’ is actually more evident in Ms Hassan Nahon working in the financial services industry and making money from it, but now condemning it despite her family wealth deriving from it – in particular Hassans.
HASSAN NAHON WANTS TO UNDO FINANCE CENTRE
In fact, Ms Hassan Nahon’s statements, which will be followed by official and unofficial sources in Spain, are to ring the death knell of the Gibraltar Finance Centre. This is a huge source of wealth for people of all economic levels in Gibraltar who work directly or indirectly in one of our largest industries.
To make our position clear: this newspaper considers that Ms Hassan Nahon is wrong to constantly denigrate our successful financial services industry. She clearly does not have a clue what she is talking about. She is risking the source of wealth of THOUSANDS of Gibraltarian families and she probably does not even realise that she is doing so.
In the end, one is left to wonder, how Mr Azopardi is going to square the merger circle. Mr Azopardi works for one of the law firms with the largest trust and company management practices in Gibraltar. This newspaper supports the financial services industry in Gibraltar and Mr Azopardi’s firm as an important part of it. Ms Hassan Nahon, his political partner to be, has just condemned them as ‘morally bankrupt’.
AZOPARDI & FINANCIAL SERVICES FIRMS
She has also suggested that the financial services business gives rise to ‘serious issues related to Governance… and corruption in the allocation of Government contracts with private companies.’ Of course, that cannot just affect Hassans and Mr Picardo. It would equally affect Mr Azopardi and his law firm, TSN, should he ever be elected. It would also affect Mr Bossino, who is also a partner. It would also reflect on Mr Clinton who worked in what would be described, in lay man’s terms, as an ‘offshore bank’. Even Mr Phillip’s firm, which is principally a litigation firm, has business in the settlement of disputes arising from financial services.
Yet, Mr Azopardi defends his current political muse and her persecution of the Gibraltar Financial Services industry. Despite their clear agreement on wanting to censor this newspaper, perhaps Mr Azopardi and Ms Hassan Nahon will fall out over their approach to one of the real pillars of the wealth of Gibraltar, our finance centre.