Mother’s testimony kicks off Sofia public inquiry / Malta News Briefing – Thursday 10 August 2023

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Updated 1230

Mother’s testimony kicks off Sofia public inquiry: The inaugural hearing of the public inquiry investigating the circumstances surrounding the tragic demise of construction worker Jean Paul Sofia took place at the Valletta courthouse this morning. During this session, Jean Paul Sofia’s mother, Isabelle Bonnici, fervently called for justice to be served by holding the “avaricious and disorderly” construction sector accountable. Present during the initial proceedings were key figures such as Planning Minister Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi and Finance Minister Clyde Caruana. Bonnici’s testimony resounded with a poignant plea, attributing her son’s unfortunate passing to the industry’s insatiable pursuit of financial gains and the absence of stringent regulations. “I want there to be hope for the workers in this sector. My son left the industry and moved into air conditioning, only to be sent back,” the anguished mother said. (Newsbook)

GWU calls off Air Malta actions: The General Workers’ Union has informed that it will be retracting the administrative directives previously issued, as a mutual understanding has been reached with Air Malta. The Union has revealed that Air Malta has positively addressed the GWU’s call to initiate discussions about a fresh collective agreement encompassing workers across all tiers. Commencing after August 15th, these deliberations are scheduled to take place. Previously, the General Workers’ Union had enforced administrative directives against Air Malta due to the airline’s non-compliance with the GWU’s appeals to commence negotiation talks. (TVM)

Property sales decline for fifth month in a row

There was an almost 20% decline in the total number of completed residential property sales in July when compared to the corresponding month in 2022. In fresh data, the National Statistics Office disclosed that during July, the final documents for property sales and the agreements for property sale commitments related to residential properties reached 1,024 and 1,085, respectively. In comparison to July 2022, the final property sale documents exhibited a reduction of 19.2%, while the agreements for property sale commitments demonstrated an increase of 13.6%. The data presented on Wednesday is drawn from provisional records of residential property sale transactions registered with the tax authority. (Times of Malta)

Morning Briefing

Site manager of fatal construction side says he had little guidance by architect
During Court proceedings in the compilation of evidence related with Jean Paul Sofia’s death, police Inspector Antonello Magro revealed that property developer Matthew Schembri had initially informed the police that he held the position of site manager at the Corradino construction site. However, Schembri’s responses turned evasive when questioned about his understanding of the role. Ultimately, he informed the officers that the architect’s guidance had been minimal. Schembri is further alleged to have forged a signature on the project’s commencement notice, a formal document required for submission to authorities prior to the commencement of construction. These charges are denied. (Maltatoday)

Rizzo Naudi family to be granted access to magisterial investigation

The widow of Mario Rizzo Naudi has been notified that she will be granted access to a copy of the magisterial investigation into her husband’s demise. Mario Rizzo Naudi, a 70-year-old family doctor from Għaxaq and a former candidate for the PN party, reportedly passed away after a fall in the hospital while recuperating from a prior home accident four months earlier. Nonetheless, in a story exposed by the media earlier this month, his widow Doriette and the family hold the conviction that the circumstances encompassing his death remain shrouded in uncertainty. (Newsbook)

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