National Book Council chairman Mark Camilleri says Superintendence for Cultural Heritage is denying him access to data on Malta's history in a bid to promote a false historical narrative
In a judicial protest filed on Thursday against the Superintendence and Heritage Malta, Camilleri said the Superintendence had, in May 2013, denied him access to a list – which he had requested to see a month prior under the Freedom of Information Act – of archaeological objects.
The request concerned all archaeological objects under the custody or responsibility of the Superintendence, which date back to between 800 and 1,400 AD.
The Superintendence informed him that it was denying his request on the basis that the information was exempt from the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, because it was “related to scientific and/or academic research and/or would entail the revealing of information before the research is concluded, which would probably place the agency at an unreasonable disadvantage”.
Camilleri went on to argue that the reason behind this was to allow the promotion of historical theories which in his “humble opinion” were “completely erroneous and false: that during the Maltese medieval period, there was a continuation in the island’s population after the Arab invasion of 870-871 AD.”
He also said that he was suspecting that the reason behind him being denied access to data which others had been granted permission to see was in order for “a historical narrative, which in [my] considered opinion is a scientific and historical falsity, to be promoted for politico-religious reasons.”