PM wants contractors to shoulder responsibility after latest tragedy / Malta News Briefing – Monday 5 December 2022

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Updated 1620

The Times of Malta reports that PM Robert Abela wants contractors to shoulder responsibilities following the latest construction tragedy which saw a 20-year-old man lose his life during works in Kordin.

Maltatoday says that the MUMN has ordered nurses at the makeshift wards in the medical library and staff canteen to refuse new admissions.

Newsbook reports that the PN said Monday’s parliamentary debate on a motion it tabled last month is government’s last chance to reimburse funds ‘stolen’ from overbilling of water and electricity since 2014.

TVM covers the launch of a multi-million investment at the new ITS campus at Smart City, Kalkara. The campus is expected to cover the needs of 2,500 students and will include three restaurants, three bars and cafeterias, 21 labs, a library and a dorm which sleeps 520 students.

Updated 1215

Air Malta pilots asked to work more, take 15% pay cut – reports

Air Malta pilots were informed they will have to work for longer hours and take a 15% wage cut during a tense meeting with Clyde Caruana. The new working conditions presented to the Airline Pilots Association remove the Maltese language as a requirement for recruitment, paving the way for the employment of foreign pilots. The package also ditches the generous early retirement scheme pilots have benefitted from over the years. Air Malta employs some 84 pilots and the 15% wage cut could see them receiving around €20,000 less per year. They will also be expected to increase their flying hours by 20% in line with the airline’s plans to utilise its planes more. (Maltatoday)

Herrera expected to head citizenship agency

Former MP José Herrera looks set to lead the board of the government’s agency handling the controversial citizenship scheme. The Times of Malta reveals that Herrera, who failed in his bid to retain his parliamentary seat earlier this year, is expected to be appointed non-executive chairman of Community Malta. The agency runs the passports-for-cash scheme as well as all other national citizenship applications. (Times of Malta)

Morning Briefing

Thousands demonstrate against abortion in Valletta

A sizeable crowd took to the streets on Sunday to protest against legal amendments to Malta’s abortion answering the call of pro-life organisers. Activists gathered around a large printout of a newborn baby that was spread across the stairs leading to Castille, the Office of the Prime Minister. Demonstrators also spread Maltese flags and posters of newborns across the square. Organisers said they believed around 20,000 people attended the event. Noteable attendees included former president Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, archbishop Charles Scicluna and Nationalist Party leader Bernard Grech.

PM, Opposition leader trade barbs on abortion debate

Women’s health is non-negotiable, Prime Minister Robert Abela said on Sunday, as he recalled past reforms on civil liberties to defend government’s next reform on abortion legislation. Abela insisted that abortion will remain illegal, with government retaining the legal clause that criminalises abortion under all circumstances. “If anyone tells you otherwise, they’re not telling you the truth.” He lambasted the PN for taking sides against civil liberties reform throughout the years. On the other hand, Opposition leader Bernard Grech made a plea to pro-life Labour MPs to speak out against government’s new reform to indemnify doctors when administering medical treatment to pregnant women that results in a termination of their pregnancy. “Each one of us must stand up and not be afraid to take action in favour of life, so that when history is written, we will be on the right side of history”, Grech said.

Ian Borg hin talks with Qatari government

Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade Ian Borg was invited by Foreign Affairs Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani to visit the country at this very busy time, as hosts of the FlFA World Cup. He was hosted by the Government of Qatar. In a statement, the DOI said that during his visit to this Gulf country, Minister Borg had several meetings to continue improving the bilateral and commercial relationship between the two countries. During this visit, Minister Borg had an important meeting with Minister of Commerce and Industry Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Qassim Al Abdullah Al Thani. They discussed the willingness of the two governments to further improve business between the two countries.

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