I have no problem in publishing your right of reply as I also have done in other cases. However, since my original article, to which your right of reply is going up, was in Maltese, but your reply is in English, I shall be posting the English translation of the Maltese version on my site for clarity’s sake. Matthew Xuereb’s reply:
Dear Dr Mercieca.
Below please find a reply which is to be published with the same prominence as the original post in accordance with Article 21 of the Cap. 248 of the Laws of Malta.
I refer to your blogpost entitled “MattXue2 minn The Times of Malta għandu fake profile bl-isem ta’ Marika Galea”, published on your site simonmercieca.com today, August 14, 2021.
I categorically deny all the allegations and insinuations in your post. What you wrote is an outright lie and pure figment of your imagination.
As I said in my reply to your WhatsApp message on Wednesday, August 11, 2021, I never, ever in my life, created any fake profiles, I never created the email addresses mentioned in your post, I never spoke to Mark Bugeja, who you say is a certain BugM. Regarding John Borg il-Paddy, my only encounter with him was at the counting hall during elections and I only learnt his name from your post.
Any link to the profile and any people mentioned in your post is a lie, maliciously done in an attempt to dent my untarnished reputation.
I have filed an official report with the Commissioner of Police and Police Cybercrime Unit to investigate this profile.
In the meantime, I reserve the right to proceed further on these defamatory and libellous allegations contained in your post.
Matthew Xuereb sgd
In relation to the above, it should be noted I had already filed an official complaint but to date, I have not yet received an acknowledgement. This is for your info and guidance.
While you have every right to precede, this does not worry me in the least, since facts are facts and can be proven. What I have written are neither allegations nor insinuations. There is clear evidence that The Times of Malta domain was used for the creation of a fake profile, something you seem to have overlooked a priori. Nevertheless, I wish to point out that from your reply, it appears that The Times of Malta is not worried that its domain can be used or has been used for the creation of a fake profile.
Somebody abusing a domain such as that of The Times of Malta should have been brought to book immediately. At the time of writing, this has not yet been done. I am sure that as President of the Institute of Journalists you should have a vested interest to ensure that such abuse is not nurtured.