In the last four years the Chairman of the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) Professor JV Bannister engaged directly Mr Piero Ugolini as a consultant to advise him on MFSA’s internal structure and carry out a regulatory assessment. Ugolini has been paid €131,143 since 2009. This year he has already been paid at least €57,276. MFSA does not say what kind of service Ugolini has provided it to be paid such a fee.
Bannister has engaged Ugolini by direct order and without going through the public procurement process he is obliged to as a chairman of a public authority.
Bannister pays high fees to Ugolini and Ugolini gives the MFSA high marks on how it carries out its supervisory duties. In praising the MFSA’s supervisory role Ugolini has never interviewed the many small and vulnerable investors who feel betrayed by MFSA as it has failed to protect them from those who have deceived them into investing in schemes not designed for them.
Piero Ugolini is only one of a long list of consultants recruited by Bannister by direct order. Since 2008 MFSA has paid over €3 million to these consultants chosen by direct order.
Bannister has also engaged Anthony Fisher, Managing Director of Global Strategy Limited, as one of his consultants and has paid him over €485,672 in consultancy fees since 2008. Since 2008 Bannister has paid around €500,000 on another consultant – Clive Briault – who was engaged by the MFSA after he had to leave the United Kingdom’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) for failing to supervise properly the mortgage bank Northern Rock which nearly collapsed, there was a run on it, over 4,000 employees lost their job, it was nationalized and forced to borrow £25 billion from the Bank of England.