In May, the Maltese government announced it would conduct an audit of Eurovision 2021 spending by broadcaster TVM and the Malta Tourism Authority. Now minister Carmelo Abela has confirmed the investigation has found no irregularities.

The audit was instigated after reports in the Maltese media claiming that local broadcaster PBS invested public money on betting agencies.

The Times of Malta previously reported that an insider claimed that foreign nationals had been given money to bet on Malta. As a result of this, the insider claimed that Malta’s Eurovision 2021 bid rose to the top of the odds. This fact helped to advertise the Maltese entry as the “bookies’ favourite”.

It was also claimed that the Maltese Tourism Authority had gone over budget through spending on social media and sponsored content in media around Europe that promoted both Destiny’s entry for Eurovision 2021 and Malta as a tourist destination.

More than €650,000 was spent promoting “Je me casse” — €350,000 spent by the Malta Tourism Authority and €300,000 by the Public Broadcasting Services.

Maltese audit results will not be made public

The Malta Independent newspaper reports that the official audit did not find that money was spend on trying to manipulate the betting odds. Carmelo Abela told the newspaper, “The audit found that both the MTA and PBS worked within their own respective procurement regulations.”

The report itself has not been published. Abela told the Independent that there were restrictions on the publication of the report. But he claimed that both PBS and the MTA had followed “established respective procedures for procurement” relating to their Eurovision work.

This isn’t the first time Malta’s broadcaster has been criticised for their Eurovision spending. In 2016, PBS were singled out for spending an estimated €1 million on Ira Losco’s “Walk on Water” entry. This included €80,000 for Ira’s holographic coat and the pricey digital projection system. This staging element was heavily promoted but eventually dropped from the performance after it did not function as expected.

Despite Malta’s strong desire to win Eurovision — and the broadcaster’s deep pockets — a Maltese act has yet to take home the crystal microphone. Ira Losco placed 12th in the grand final, while Destiny finished seventh, both acts doing far better with the juries than with televoters. However, Destiny’s seven place finish remains Malta’s best Eurovision result in 16 years.

What do you think? Does a broadcaster need to spend big to win Eurovision? Should the EBU put a cap on spending? Tell us your thoughts below!

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Luc
Luc
8 days ago

> the govt finds “no irregularities”
> the report won’t be made public
idk sounds pretty sus

Bird Lover
Bird Lover
11 days ago

the EBU hates malta anyway. they screwed the running order after winning a semi

Sot
Sot
12 days ago

Why don’t they make their public? This will raise more doubts that ever..

Azaad
Azaad
12 days ago

Not releasing the report publicly is a little bit suspicious.

Maltese Falcon
Maltese Falcon
12 days ago

As a citizen of Malta, this does not surprise me at all. Corruption has found its way in all sectors and industries in Malta unfortunately. We definitely did not deserve to win this year, yet the broadcaster tried to push for it, only for it to backfire massively. Granted we did not merit to be placed 6th in the running order after winning the semi with quite a wide margin, and we did not merit getting less televotes than entries like Moldova, BUT unless PBS changes its methods and focuses more on the act, rather than on the PR, we… Read more »

notyourtoy
notyourtoy
11 days ago
Reply to  Maltese Falcon

You literally had Kewkba to pull something out of the box, but the extremely boring Fabrizio’s sister won the National Final…

Malta Fan
Malta Fan
13 days ago

I feel sorry for our Maltese broadcaster. Since we won Junior Eurovision twice the hope of winning the Eurovision has been boosted. PBS did its best in 2016, 2019 and 2021 and when they knew that it’s hard for us when it comes to televoting, PBS came out of their comfort zone to try to attract at least 100 televoting points by promoting our entries but we were unsuccessful the 3 times. But after all I personally feel that the EBU does not want Malta to win and this is evident in the fact that Destiny was placed so early… Read more »

Whisker
Whisker
13 days ago
Reply to  Malta Fan

There is NO chance Malta would have won this year. Top 5 this year were miles ahead the Swedish show of Malta. A totally different league. Destiny couldn’t sell the song, song and artist were a mismatch. The broadcaster was totally and completely wrong about their entry. To add, if hypothetically EBU wouldn’t want a certain broadcaster to win, it could be that the problem lies with the broadcaster, not EBU. Why wouldn’t EBU cherish a victory of a new country? ESC is much more than the TV shows people watch. Strengthening local music and artists in Malta sounds like… Read more »

Bird Lover
Bird Lover
11 days ago
Reply to  Whisker

looool pls dont embarrass yourself
they dont champion things yet championed a country winning just so that it could save its economy post covid?

Last edited 11 days ago by Bird Lover
sTommie
sTommie
13 days ago
Reply to  Malta Fan

Destiny finished highest of all the artists that had nothing to do with the writing of their song. If there is one thing we can conclude from recent years is that to be successful in Eurovision you have be involved in the song you perform on stage. So stop buying songs from composing factories and show some originality for once.

Jofty
Jofty
12 days ago
Reply to  sTommie

It did not get Lesley Roy very far

Jar
Jar
12 days ago
Reply to  Jofty

As an Irishman I’ll tell you Lesley’s lack of a singing voice on the night, insane staging and basic song deserved its last place… I can tell she had involvement in our 2021 jesc entry cuz it sounds like Story Of My Life but in Irish.

Lesley is a lovely girl, talented, but she needs to stay far away from the bombastic, performance based Eurovision and stick to the acoustic gigs.

Zulal
Zulal
11 days ago
Reply to  Malta Fan

Malta has been robbed many times and I can’t get why it hasn’t won yet. Not to mention the fact that it’s always unfairly underrated by the televoting, but almost nobody admits that. Whenever the juries do something wrong, everyone is willing to critize them; but when it’s the televoters: “oh, nevermind”

Polegend Godgarina
13 days ago

i mean it’s their own money they threw down the drain so if they don’t care, good for them !

Matt Church
Matt Church
13 days ago

Exactly…. they got 47 televotes for all their antics.

Telkke
Telkke
13 days ago

If there wasn’t anything wrong with the things that MTA and PBS had done, why hide the results of this investigation? Personally I do find Malta being a bit of a cheater of some sort these days like Azerbaijan. I won’t be voting for either one in 2022, just because of the way they treat the contest.

They can buy publicity and votes, but the respect for these countries is all gone.

Jesper Hjellnes
Jesper Hjellnes
13 days ago

I hope Destiny will represent Malta again. She has an amazing voice and so much talent and deserved better than being in the middle of all this mess. Give her a strong song and Malta’s first ESC victory might be on its way.

Una
Una
13 days ago

She gave herself 12 points in the interview with Nikkie. All the rest of the artists could give 12 or 8,10, 12 points to “competition” and in some cases even explained why. She first needs to eat some humble pie before doing Eurovision again.

Jonas
Jonas
13 days ago

I have not trusted Malta since they gave Azerbaijan 12 points four years in a row.

Sorry.

JONAS (VERSION 2.0)
JONAS (VERSION 2.0)
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

I have not trusted your country since you gave your neighboring countries 12 points for years and years.

Sorry.

Una
Una
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

One could think that they would never admit to any “wrongdoing” because why do that?? What *could* happen next??

Maya G
Maya G
11 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

Wait till you see their voting record from the days of 100% jury vote, suspiciously the countries to which they gave high marks also gave them high marks.
Also, see Sigga’s testimony here at 7:15 >https://youtu.be/CKfIJPiJtu8?t=435

Alex
Alex
13 days ago

Sure Jan, we believe you (sarcasm).

It’s quite clear now why Malta is a bookies favourite, yet fails big time in televoting (see 2016, 2019, 2021). I think Destiny had good chances but the staging/outfit was messy and her voice was too high pitched at some parts of the show.

and wow did they really pay 80k for Ira’s holographic coat that we never seen? this is on a whole different level of incompetence…

Una
Una
13 days ago
Reply to  Alex

And that attitude … I think that both Destiny and Ira (Malta) thought they had the contest in their pockets.

Jar
Jar
12 days ago
Reply to  Una

Ira is humble compared with Destiny. But it’s not her fault (Destiny) she’s been surrounded by yes men her entire life.

Darren
Darren
13 days ago

Well they would say that wouldn’t they? MTV is state owned. Admitting to it would open a big can of worms regarding tax payers money. It is so obviously happening. The outsourcing of everything to Sweden The payment of people to put odds on Malta so they’d rise in the odds Paying people like Cascada to hype up the act Destiny was everywhere!! The suddenly absent accounts from here who’d attack anyone and call them Malta “haters” (hate that word) just because they weren’t fans of the song. We’ll see if Mario/Ellen or whatever they’re going to be called suddenly… Read more »

Jofty
Jofty
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

Yet if RTE did this you would be getting the flags out. Be consistent.

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Jofty

Not even
If you actually read my comments about RTE you’d know very well that I wouldn’t.
Be aware.

Una
Una
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

I would add payment for ads on youtube.

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
11 days ago

Ahhh, ahahaha

Luc
Luc
8 days ago

OMG this is the best unintended pun ever, I can’t help laughing! 😀

Last edited 8 days ago by Luc
raylee
raylee
13 days ago

sure sweetheart , sure you didn’t cheat !
how persuasive

Last edited 13 days ago by raylee
Ashton
Ashton
13 days ago

annoying comments incoming about how “they’re lying” and “they’re corrupt” in 3, 2, 1:

Unknown Melody
Unknown Melody
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Well… we all know they are

Ashton
Ashton
13 days ago
Reply to  Unknown Melody

and thus my point is proven

Unknown Melody
Unknown Melody
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Why is the truth annoying?

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

People are entitled to question something which is so obviously corrupt.
They’re hardly going to admit it and people should be allowed share their opinion about it.

Ashton
Ashton
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

And I’m gonna share my opinion right back: if any other country sent that song you all would have been eating it up. If any other singer (read: someone that isn’t black) was performing it, you would have eaten it up. The connection between racist vitriol that Destiny received coupled with the constant accusations of corruption is absolutely not lost on me.

Unknown Melody
Unknown Melody
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Destiny was not the only black singer in ESC, but Sweden, Israel or the Netherlands were never accused of shady behavior. Don’t play the racism card unnecessarily, it cheapens the struggle of many oppressed people.

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Nonsense
To tar us all as racist without any evidence or proof to back that up is downright disgusting and very cheap.
And no I wouldn’t have been eating it up and no it’s not because it’s Malta, not because it’s Destiny, Not because she’s black just for the plain and simple reason that the song was pretty bad and unoriginal.

Ashton
Ashton
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

‘Without any evidence or proof to back that up’ I find it downright disgusting and very cheap that not only are you blind to the hate she received on this very website for her skin colour and for being plus sized, but on the wider internet as a whole. You lack nuance, thinking that the accusations of corruption and the abuse Destiny received were not correlated in some way. There have been countries that have manipulated the odds before, including Azerbaijan and Russia, and yet I’ve never seen this amount of hate go to any of their entries. In fact,… Read more »

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

All I saw on this website was people saying they didn’t like the song and being subsequently attacked by probably paid accounts, ripping into them and accusing them of all sorts. It was those accounts who where jumping on the black and plus sized arguments. Eurovision has had black and plus sized acts for years! If you remember in 2020 (when destiny was coming to the contest with something true to her) she was actually being lauded on this site, with everyone, including myself calling her a winner in 2020. So your argument that she’s this poor victim of bullying… Read more »

Ashton
Ashton
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

We clearly have a very different opinion here and I don’t really want to continue an argument that isn’t going to be resolved. But I think you are being very blind to some of the comments you can see in past articles about Malta. And I think that arguing that she isn’t a victim of bullying is tone-deaf at best.

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Yeah let’s see what bandwagon you’s all come and jump on in 2022.
Heaven forbid someone ends up not liking the song, they’ll be outright cancelled and accused of every ism in the dictionary.

Jonas
Jonas
12 days ago
Reply to  Darren

I think the upvotes for this comment show a big part of the reason Destiny didn’t do well. Not necessarily because of race, more that some people are just allergic to anything that they see as “woke” …and unfortunately that is how they regard a feminist song like Je Me Casse.

Jonas
Jonas
13 days ago
Reply to  Darren

Racism is definitely a problem, though. Zero points for Jeangu should convince anybody of that.

Darren
Darren
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

Oh it is.
But that’s not why Destiny didn’t win and that’s not why people didn’t like JMC.
That’s all I’m saying.

Samo
Samo
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

Zero points for Jeangu were simply a matter of people not liking the song. Germany, UK and Spain also got zero points – was that because of a racism towards white people?

We really need to stop this “if someone who’s black doesn’t do well, it’s racism” thing.

Last edited 13 days ago by Samo
Jonas
Jonas
12 days ago
Reply to  Samo

Nobody said that, but thank you for agreeing with me – no, they did not like the song about the end of racism.

AM2PM
AM2PM
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

I call BS. Three white artists also received zero points.

Jonas
Jonas
12 days ago
Reply to  AM2PM

Yeah, thanks, I know that. Their songs were not nearly as good and not about the end of black oppression.

Whisker
Whisker
13 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

It’s not that people and juries didn’t vote for Jeangu because he was black, they didn’t vote for him because they are stuPid and lack curiosity about the world. His song was pure art, those lyrics, THOSE LYRICS! And the performance truly special and beautiful.

Jonas
Jonas
12 days ago
Reply to  Whisker

Yes. It’s the lyrics they didn’t vote for. They don’t want the birth of a new anything, they want everything to stay the same. Go backwards even.

Whisker
Whisker
12 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

EBU should interview jury members and approve them. Being a jury member carries a great a responsibility. That would be the birth of a new age too. In ESC. I’m happy I got to watch such a performance but I’m still very upset about that situation.

Jonas
Jonas
12 days ago
Reply to  Whisker

Rule number one, you need to be able to appreciate music.

Whisker
Whisker
12 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

EBU should take jury membership extremely seriously. It’s obvious they don’t. Should jury members be truly professional and act independently from the broadcaster in some cases, the results would look different.

Esc addict
Esc addict
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

You’re the first to be hateful towards others and towards specific countries here on wiwibloggs, let me laugh, you are a big part of the hatred here so come on be consistent, assume, complain for the others receiving hatred then too, arff no you can’t because you are part of this. So think a little before complaining. And the racism card to try to defend something that is obvious you can’ t do worst. And unfortunately for you I’m a big fan of Destiny and I keep listening je me casse, all of my love, not my soul, and some… Read more »

Last edited 13 days ago by Esc addict
123
123
13 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Oh nooo, not the race card. LoL
Kinda pathetic if you ask me…