Malta News Briefing – Saturday 11 September 2021

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Updated 1245 – Mid-Day Briefing

96-year-old passes away with Covid-19

Healthcare workers reported 34 new Covid-19 cases on Saturday, as patients in hospital went up to 31. A 96-year-old man became the 447th person to die while positive since the start of the pandemic.

Rosianne Cutajar called by Council of Europe to answer to allegations of breach of conduct

Labour MP Rosianne Cutajar has been given an ultimatum by the Council of Europe’s parliamentary assembly’s committee on rule of procedures and immunities, to answer accusation of breach of conduct. Council members are accusing Cutajar of withholding her dealings with Yorgen Fenech as she defended him during an Assembly of the same Council.

Cutajar is accused of a breach of the PACE code of conduct for MPs, over her dealings with Tumas magnate Yorgen Fenech in her role as a broker for the purchase of an Mdina property valued at €3.1 million. “Cutajar has not filed a single declaration of interest in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe by 15 April 2021. Neither did she make any oral statement drawing attention to her links with Mr Fenech. Under paragraph 7, 8 and 9 of the rules of conduct in the code of the conducts she should have made such a declaration in the case of a potential or actual conflict of interest or even better, she should have tried to resolve this conflict of interest before the debate,” Dutch MP Peter Omtzigt said.

Updated 0730 – Newspaper Review

The Times of Malta leads with the follow-up on Thursday’s shooting in Iklin with the accused saying that he feared for his life. The accused was refused bail.

The Malta Independent‘s interpretation of the latest Eurobarometer survey is that the Maltese are happy with response to Covid-19 but feel the country ‘moving in wrong direction.

In-Nazzjon says that the PN has come up with specific incentives for support and financial assistance to industry

The Times of Malta recounts the incredible story of the firefighter who cheated his death during the tragic events of 9/11.

L-Orizzont reports on developments from Brussels saying that the battle on debt has just begun, with reference to the increasing debt burden of most European Member States

The Malta Independent quotes Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo who described this Summer’s tourism sector as relatively satisfactory

L-Orizzont talks with a Maltese man who lives in New York who describes 9/11 as the worst day of his life

In-Nazzjon dedicates its front page pictorial to the remembrances of the 20th anniverary of the 9/11 attacks on the USA.

Morning Briefing

Sultana pleads not guilty of attempted murder

Ryan Sultana, the man accused of shooting a 55-year-old in Iklin has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder, arguing that he acted in self-defence, expressing conviction that CCTV footage will exonerate him. Sultana, 24, is also facing other charges related to misuse of a firearm, causing violence and breaching the public peace. The incident happened on Thursday afternoon in Valley Road, Iklin. The victim, Vincent Xuereb, known by his nickname of “Ċensu ‘L-Oranġjo,” was shot multiple times and left grievously wounded.

Sultana was denied bail.

Tumas Group disassociates itself from Yorgen Fenech

The Tumas group has disassociated itself from money laundering allegations involving its former director Yorgen Fenech and from Fenech personally. In a statement, the group said it wants to disassociate itself from the wrongdoing alleged in this case, “and to repeat previous statements expressing its disappointment with and disassociation from other allegations made with respect to Mr Yorgen Fenech.” It also stated that the arranged payment of a jackpot in favour of pre-designated individuals was “not possible,” but said it was “nevertheless taking the allegation extremely seriously.”

Industrial actions by MUMN at Mater Dei Hospital

Mater Dei Hospital has advised that, due to industrial actions registered by MUMN at CSSD – the department which sterilizes all medical instruments, scheduled operations may be affected and possibly postponed. The Ministry for Health is in continuous discussion with MUMN to end these industrial actions at the earliest.

Covid-19 Update: 38 new cases were reported on Friday, as 43 patients recovered. This brought a slight drop in active cases to 740. 28 patients remain in hospital, two in intensive care.

CDE News