UPDATE – Fire in Corradino / Malta News Briefing – Sunday 31 July 2022

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Update 1345h – Fire in Corradino

Fire fighters battled a major blaze on an open field storage site near the Karta Converters factory at the Corradino Industrial Estate. The police said the fire was reported at 1.30pm.  Eyewitnesses said scrap material, trucks and tractors appeared to be on the site.  The Civil Protection Department deployed several fire-engines to contain the blaze. Two ambulances were also on the scene although there were no reports of anyone having been injured.

Update 1230h Covid-19 Update

58 new cases of Covid-19 were found by the health authorities on Sunday, while one more patient has died. Meanwhile, the number of active cases has dwindled to 1,775 as 222 more people recovered. The total number of cases now stands at 112,828, while total recoveries amount to 109,863. The death toll is 794. (Malta Independent)

Two Traffic Accidents

An Italian woman was seriously injured when a quadbike she was riding on crashed into a wall in Victoria, Gozo.  The police said the accident happened late on Saturday afternoon in Triq San Anard. The quadbike was being driven by a 29-year-old Italian, who was slightly injured, The woman, also a 29-year-old Italian suffered serious injuries and was hospitalised.  In a separate accident, a 21-year-old Dutch man was injured when he was hit by a car in Rue D-Argens, Gzira, at about 7pm on Saturday. The car, a Toyota Corolla, was being driven by a 28-year-old Syrian resident in Zebbuġ. (Times of Malta)

Updated 0830: Reports reveals payments by Vitals to Keith Schembri’s wife’s firm

The Times of Malta today headlines with a major development in the Vitals story, reporting that an interior design company run by Keith Schembri’s wife Josette received tens of thousands of euros in payments from Vitals and Steward, corporate records show. Prosecutors are alleging that the company, 3City Design, is alleged to have been used as part of a “complex money-laundering scheme” to transfer cash between various entities. The Times says that according to investigations it carried out, 3City Design began receiving notable payments at around the same time talks were underway for Steward Healthcare to buy out the hospitals concession from Vitals. Read more here.

PN’s Arrigo laments being sidelined

In an emotional speech at the end of his tenure as PN Deputy Leader, Robert Arrigo said he was deeply hurt by the party, claiming he was told that he was only capable of fundraising. “They told me I was only capable of fundraising. Well I did fundraise a lot of money and I have done so till the very last day,” Arrigo said. He insisted that he was not aware of the reasons why he was sidelined. (Maltatoday)

Morning Briefing

40 migrants in Malta’s SAR
Around 40 asylum seekers are seeking refuge in Malta after NGO Alarm Phhone said that they are desperate need of rescuing. Stating that their boat was in Malta’s search and rescue zone, Alarm Phone said the group had run out of food and water and urged the Armed Forces of Malta (AFM) “to do its duty and rescue them”. “We spoke to the group in distress again! They are in Maltese SAR zone. They tell us, they don’t have any water or food and are really exhausted,” the NGO said on Twitter. This boat is different from the one with 5 asylum seekers who are currently stranded in the country’s SAR.

Perici Calascione elected as PN Deputy Leader

Alex Perici Calascione has secured a 90% approval by PN delegates, and was this afternoon elected deputy leader for the Nationalist Party. The candidate was uncontested for this position. He takes the place of Robert Arrigo and David Agius with the party opting to go for one such post. PN delegates also had the opportunity to vote for two young members on the executive committee, electing Jake Scerri Seychell, who obtained 475 votes, and Jean Paul Barbara, with 595 preferences.

Bolt Food couriers eye further action

Bolt Food couriers hailed Friday’s strike as a “success”, saying they will not back down until their demands are met. An estimated 500 couriers took part in Friday’s strike, organised in protest of the working conditions, and after one of them was beaten up in Zabbar while picking up an order from a pizzeria. “So without doubt yesterday was a massive step forward with us receiving a lot of support from the people and restaurants. We have seen a huge strain on bolt food yesterday with only very few couriers on the road and demand going up without the means to deliver,” a spokesperson for the courtiers told MaltaToday.

Covid-19 Update: Active cases declined further on Saturday with a higher number of recoveries and only 51 new cases being reported. The number of active cases is now 1,940. (The Malta Independent)

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