UPDATE – Vigil held to commemorate Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder Malta News Briefing – Saturday 16 October 2021

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Update 1800 – Evening Roundup

Bidnija vigil on the fourth anniversary of Daphne Caruana Galizia Murder

Activists gathered in Bidnija for a silent vigil marking four years since the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia on Saturday.  Those in attendance unfurled a large banner reading ‘Daphne Was Right’ in the field where Caruana Galizia’s car came to a stop after being blown up minutes away from her home on October 17, 2017. Attendees, including members of organising groups Occupy Justice and Repubblika, as well as the murdered journalist’s family and friends, laid flowers and candles at the site. TimesofMalta

Construction worker dies

Police said that a man lost his life after a three-storey fall from a construction site. The incident occurred at around 11am at Triq Karmnu Abela in Ħamrun, while the man, a 50-year-old Bulgarian man from St Paul’s Bay was doing some work. MaltaToday

Elderly man seriously injured after one-story fall on construction site

An elderly man was critically injured after falling one storey on a construction site. The accident took place in Clarence Street, Pieta’, on Saturday at 12.15pm. The man, aged 77 of San Gwann, was given first assistance before being taken to hospital with serious injuries. Malta Independent

Man carrying €36,040 in undeclared cash arrested at seaport

A man carrying €36,040 in undeclared cash was arrested before departing to Sicily from the Marsa report. The passenger was stopped by Customs Officials during the routine currency controls at the seaport terminal. The man, a Sebian national, told officials that he had no money to declare but when he was escorted for a search, he was found to be carrying €7,740.  A thorough search of his belongings and vehicle led to the discovery of a further €28,300, concealed in a backpack. €10,000 were returned to the passenger whilst the remaining amount was withheld.  The Police were duly informed and arrived on the scene to arrest the passenger. The withheld money was placed in a safety deposit. Newsbook.com.mt

Updated 1300 – Mid-Day Briefing

Graffiti demands criminal investigation in Electrogas deal

Moviment Graffitti turned up the heat on the anniversary of Daphne Caruana Galizia’s assassination, with protesters demanding that the Electrogas power station deal be criminally investigated. The group descended to Delimara with a banner reading “a deal soaked in blood” and tied it to the gates of the complex.
Graffitti activist Robert Fenech said “nstead of prosecutions, reports are compiled and left hidden in some drawer. Instead of serious investigation, we must suffer through the game of ‘catch me if you can’ currently being played out in parliament as Konrad Mizzi does his best to avoid answering for his misdeeds,” he said. (Times of Malta)

National fund to invest businesses’ carbon credits

Local businesses will be able to buy carbon credits through a national fund that will in turn invest such monies in green projects.
Currently, to offsetting their carbon footprint, local businesses are paying into investments in projects abroad. These will now be able to pour this money in projects that will benefit Maltese taxpayers. “The budget measures we have been entrusted with for the year 2022 are intended to support the transition of our country to a more sustainable level so that by 2050 we have reached the goal of decarbonisation,” Dalli said. (Independent).

ADPD calls for PBS independence
Green Party ADPD has said there was no room for government-controlled public broadcasting and the propaganda of the political stations in a modern European democracy.
Sandra Gauci, ADPD deputy secretary-general, recalling Daphne Caruana Galizia’s death, argued that “four years after this tragedy, journalists are still being threatened, some try to undermine their credibility and try to bribe or threaten them into silence. Instead of learning from this tragedy and becoming a more democratic society, we have become a country which is more tribal”
She said this was the result of years of propaganda from the main parties’ stations and the national broadcasting.
“Since public broadcasting is run by a minister, it is an extension of the governing party’s propaganda machine, with party activists becoming ‘broadcasters’ or administrators at the state’s broadcasting company.” (Maltatoday).

Covid-19 Update

Active cases declined to 279 after 19 recoveries were reported on Saturday as opposed to eight new cases. The number of persons currently hospitalised has increased to 10, but one remains in intensive care.

Morning Briefing

Council of Europe, US Embassy say justice not yet fully served in Caruana Galizia case

Four years after the brutal assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, Dunja Mijatović, the Council of Europe’s top human rights officialsaid that justice has not yet been served. While noting that important steps have been made since Caruana Galizia was assassinated, with a public inquiry having made several recommendations for rule of law reform, there was much more to do, she added. “Investigations into her killing are still ongoing and despite some progress, full accountability has not yet been established. As the investigations continue, it is crucial that the Maltese authorities identify and prosecute all those responsible,” Mijatović said.

Caruana Galizia was killed in a car bomb near her home in Bidnija on October 16, 2017.

These sentiments were echoed by the US Embassy. In a statement, it said that: “we reiterate that strong judicial processes and accountability are essential to the just conclusion to this case, which will reassure journalists everywhere that their voices are valued. The United States strongly supports the rule of law and the vital role of a free and independent press around the world.”
The Embassy also joined condemnation of violence to silence dissenting voices.

Social restrictions to be eased further

Health Minister Chris Fearne said that Malta’s Covid-19 situation was progressing well and health authorities were consequently reducing restrictions for vaccine-only public events. “The COVID-19 situation is under control, as currently we have 11 people receiving treatment for the virus in hospital, and one person in ITU. With this in mind, the country is in a position to further reduce restrictions,” Fearne said in a press briefing this morning, adding that there were no clusters in schools.

The key changes include an increased maximum capacity to 300 persons for seated events, increased ferry capacity and increased number of persons at event tables (from six to eight). Children under 12 will no longer need a negative test result to attend events.

Covid-19 Update: The number of active cases remained virtually unchanged (290) as new cases (25) and recoveries (24) balanced out each other on Friday. The number of patients in hospital increased to 11, with one remaining in ITU.

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