Knights and Dames of the Confraternity of the Knights of St. Peter & St. Paul from Malta, Melbourne, Germany, Portugal and Bulgaria

in the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Nadur on Wednesday, 28 June, 2017.

 

 

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Sunday Program 24 September, 2017

Presented by Peter Paul Portelli, Pauline Zahra, Josephine Dimech, Mary Abela and George Sammut.

 

 

 

 

Knights of St. Peter & St. Paul: http://www.knightsofstpeterandstpaul.com/

Maltese Cultural Centre Albion. Melbourne. Click to open link: https://www.facebook.com/Maltese-Cultural-Centre-Albion-568850423317001/

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Confraternity of the Knights of St.Peter & St.Paul

24TH JUNE 2017 - 20TH ANNIVERSARY, 2017

PETER PAUL PORTELLI - JOSEPH J COLEIRO

Number of Pages: 174

Year Published: June 2017

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The History and more of this Confraternity that has Chapters all over the World.

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The Sunday Request Program is now playing on nadurjana.com . Enjoy.  

 

Tuesday 26 September, 2017

 

Kliem u Hajja tal-Hadd 24 ta' Settembru 2017

Klikkja hawn http://nadurjana.com/links.html biex tisma

 Sud Djaknu Dennis Mifsud.

Toninu Jirrakkonta ( Ripetut )

Tifkiriet ta' Albert Sultana

Klikkja hawn http://nadurjana.com/photoalbum.html biex tisma

Il mibki Anthony Sultana

Diskursata ma Martin Camilleri minn Nadur.

klikkja hawn NEWS biex tisma

Martin Camilleri.

PN candidate resigns, executive member calls for leadership election to be scrapped

PN general election candidate Kevin Cassar on Saturday announced that he had resigned from the party, saying that he was concerned at the direction the PN was taking, and which he did not wish to follow.

The surgeon, who contested on the 2nd and 6th electoral districts, sent a letter to PN Assistant Secretary General Jean Pierre Debono, in which he told him that he was resigning over serious doubts on new PN leader Adrian Delia.

Trial of man accused of murder over tamarisk trimming in Marsalforn begins

A 67-year old pensioner is indicted for murder of a father, 45, and the attempted murder of his son, 24, after a heated argument on the trimming of a tamarisk tree that ended in bloodshed

A jury has heard police witnesses describe how an argument over the trimming of a protected tree in Qbajjar, in Gozo in 2013, ended up with one man dead and another accused of his murder.

Judge Antonio Mizzi is presiding over the trial by jury of pensioner Gerald Galea, 67, from Zebbug, Gozo, which began earlier today.

Galea is indicted for the murder of 45 year-old John Spiteri and the attempted murder of his 24 year-old son, Matthew in what has been described as a tragic ending to an argument.

Galea is also accused of causing €2,660 worth of damage to the car, which belonged to a third party, dangerous driving, and causing damage amounting to €600 to the victim’s car.

The fatal incident occurred on the Qbajjar promenade in Marsalforn, Gozo on June 19 2013, at around 3:15pm.

Spiteri and his son had been trimming some trees to allow them to set up a kiosk on the site, when the accused turned up in his car and complained about this. An argument ensued, after which the accused is alleged to have driven around the parking area a number of times before driving at John Spiteri.

Spiteri was dragged underneath the vehicle and admitted to hospital suffering from critical injuries, which claimed his life shortly afterwards. Matthew Spiteri was not injured, having avoided being mowed down by the onrushing vehicle.

Lawyers Giannella Busuttil and Kevin Valletta, who are leading the prosecution on behalf of the Attorney General, said the kiosk had been legal and was being set up with the local council’s permission.

Busuttil said Galea, who lived opposite the site, emerged from his home and confronted the men, saying that he was not going to allow them to set up shop on the site, at which point John Spiteri invited him to file a police report. Seeing that Galea was going to stand his ground, Spiteri told his son to take note pf the licence plate of the man’s vehicle.

The son went to pick up his mobile phone and upon his return, saw his father bleeding from a cut lip and punching the accused. Galea then ran his father over, before turning the vehicle around to hit him too.

According to the prosecution, the son moved out of the car’s path in time, grabbed on to the driver side door pillar and began to punch the accused, who then drove away and into a low wall, uprooting a tree in the process. Upon emerging from the vehicle, the accused received several blows to the face at the hands of Matthew Spiteri.


Galea arrived at the scene in a car belonging to his brother-in-law.

When he drove at Spiteri, the victim had been resting against his own truck, in the space between it and a low wall. Spiteri was knocked down and dragged under the car for several metres.

News reports from the time of Galea’s arraignment were accompanied by pictures of the accused being escorted into court, face bruised and eyes swollen.

Galea was kept in hospital for observation after the incident and released the next day into the custody of waiting police officers. He told police that he had gone outside to drive his mother to the Ta’ Pinu church, and had approached the men to see what was happening.

Galea told police investigators he stopped six feet away from them, spoke to them calmly, before John Spiteri attacked him as he was getting into his car. He reversed away and then put the automatic transmission car into ‘drive’, saying he didn’t know what had happened after that because his feet “jammed up.”

Matthew Spiteri told police that he and his father had been cutting down the tamarisk trees to clean up the place and to prevent rat infestation so as to set up their kiosk, something they did every year.

Lawyer Arthur Azzopardi, defence counsel together with lawyer Jason Azzopardi, cross-examined, asking the police witness about the accused’s injuries at the time of his arrest. These included fractures and were grievous. “His face...his right eye was blue and he had a big bruise on his face and under his eyes, if I remember correctly,” said the witness.

Azzopardi asked whether the police had ascertained whether “a person with three facial fractures and whose eyes were swollen was in a mental state capable of interrogation”, and whether Galea had been taken to see an ENT specialist before his interrogation.

When Judge Mizzi pointed out that a medical note showed he had been taken to hospital after midnight, the lawyer said the records said that doctors ordered that Galea be taken to ENT, ophthalmic and other surgeons. Had this been done, he asked?  “What I remember is that the accused wasn’t unwell, otherwise we would have taken him to hospital or a polyclinic,” the witness replied.

Matthew Spiteri had told police that he punched Galea a number of times but had not been charged because Galea “is undergoing criminal proceedings and we are under the belief that it might have been self defence,” the police inspector replied, pointing out that charges could still be pressed if it emerged that this wasn’t the case.

Another police officer, the first to arrive at the scene, saw Galea by the skips on the site, clearly needing medical assistance as he had a swollen black eye.

“I noticed that the victim was covered in dust and was bleeding from the head. There was blood on the ground too... I thought it was a traffic accident at first but then a person in an orange top came running at me shouting ‘don’t let that man go, he ran over my dad, don’t let him leave’. At that point I realised that it wasn’t a regular traffic accident, but an argument.”

Matthew Spiteri told the officer Galea had reversed, performed two laps of the parking area and then drove on to the Spiteris, hitting the victim and dragging him around the parking area.

The officer said Galea was in shock, and Spiteri, was crying, struggling to breathe. “We had to restrain him because he wanted to get into his truck to go see his father in hospital.”

One Joseph Axiaq, who had been on holiday from Australia in a house overlooking the promenade, had rushed to see what was happening outside, witnessing Spiteri being run over.

Defence counsel Jason Azzopardi made reference to a transcript of an emergency call, reporting that a person had “emerged from a car and had fallen to the ground and appeared to be in critical condition.” The officer confirmed that Galea was seriously injured. “He looked beaten up.”

Monday 25 September, 2017

Nadur Council installs several dog waste bins around the town

The Nadur Local Council, in conjunction with GreenPak, has installed a number of dog waste bins around the town.

The Council said that it encourages everyone to clean-up after their dogs and to make use of these bins, which, they pointed out, are not for general household waste.

Further initiatives for public cleanliness will be announced in the coming weeks, the Council said.

PD to contest by elections, admits it 'cannot succeed' in stopping Delia

Despite acknowledging that the party cannot win the by election, Partit Demokratiku has made the decision to contest the by election, arguing that its standards of good governance 'morally obliged them to intervene'

The executive of Partit Demokratiku has unanimously decided that its candidates will contest the by elections, despite being "fully aware that it cannot succeed in blocking the newly elected PN leader from entering Parliament."

In its statement, the PD said that it does not believe the current leader of the Nationalist party epitomises the necessary qualities of a leader and that as "watchdog", the party must continue to press for redirection where required.

"The credentials of the PN leader will not go far in giving credibility to the Opposition or the potential alternative government it aims to portray," the PD continued.

Arguing that its principles of good governance have "morally obliged them to intervene", the PD said that it will be watching the PN Opposition and Government alike.

“Partit Demokratiku intends for there to be a strong Opposition and will ensure this by not compromising on fundamental values,” it insisted.

 

Adrian Delia gives thanks to Debono, MP who will resign for leader’s co-option

PN leader Adrian Delia pays tribute to his backer Jean Pierre Debono, a newly-elected MP who will resign his seat to facilitate Delia’s co-option

The PN leader Adrian Delia paid tribute to backer and MP Jean Pierre Debono for declaring he would resign his seat on Monday, triggering a casual election that should pave the way for Delia to take up a seat in the House.

“I have the utmost respect for Jean Pierre Debono’s decision,” Delia said. “His canvassers understand that the seat is not their own, but is symbolic of the people’s will to have a Nationalist MP in that seat. Debono recognises what he is doing for his party and for his country,” Delia said.

“I’m a party boy – my first love is the party,” Jean Pierre Debono said during the interview. “Our duty is to follow one leader to work to better the country.”

The MP appealed to candidates in the seventh district to hand over their seat to Delia as soon as the casual election is announced. Debono also called for unity within the party, as the Opposition moves forward under Delia’s leadership.

On Radio 101, Delia refuted suggestions that he was treating an upcoming meeting with Prime Minister Joseph Muscat as a ‘challenge’, saying his goal was to discuss with Muscat a proposal to give MPs a free vote on legislation dealing with morals.

“Morals transcend a party,” Delia said. “They go beyond political discourse.”

Delia said elections for the party’s two deputy leaders will take place at the end of the year, arguing that the Opposition needs to be ready to go by the start of 2018.

He also played down criticism of his observation in a recent interview that the Maltese were “not complicated”. “I was misunderstood. I only meant that the Maltese are content with simple pleasures like going to the town square in the evening for a chat.”

Referring to recent statistics on poverty, Delia insisted that the figure of people living at risk of poverty, now up to 69,920, was higher when taking into consideration Caritas statistics, claiming over 100,000 were at risk of poverty. “Where are the hundreds of millions coming in from the sale of passports?” Delia asked. “Where’s all this surplus that every one is talking about?”

He called for a safety net for those at risk of poverty, calling for proposals that will continue to help people climb up the social ladder.

But Delia had no comments about reports that the PN’s electoral commission resigned following his election, especially in light of accusations that Debono could have handled proxy documents for votes that carried falsified signatures.

Sunday 24 September, 2017

Sunday Request Program

60 minutes of your favourite songs. Enjoy.

Karol Aquilina considers calling urgent meeting of PN administrative council

After MaltaToday reveals confidential report on falsification of voters’ signatures, the highest body in the PN is considering meeting to discuss disciplinary action against Jean Pierre Debono

Jean Pierre Debono (left) might appear in front of Administrative Council chaired by Karol Aquilina

The president of the Nationalist Party administrative council Karol Aquilina may call an urgent meeting to look into a report of the PN’s electoral commission that severely rebuked Nationalist MP Jean Pierre Debono who still holds the post of assistant secretary general of the Nationalist Party.

On Friday MaltaToday published a confidential report accusing Debono of having handled proxies for votes in the PN leadership election with falsified signatures.

The report clearly stated that under his watch, Debono failed to verify the signatures for the proxy votes, delivered to him by PN sectional committee members on behalf of party members.

Debono has categorically denied having falsified the signature. MaltaToday has since its original report accepted that Debono was accused by the electoral commission of not having verified the proxies handed to him. Debono unashamedly backed Adrian Delia as did his wife Kristy Debono who is also an MP.

Sources who spoke to MaltaToday said the proxies would have allowed Debono, a backer of new PN leader Adrian Delia, to collect voting documents so that he could deliver them to paid-up members eligible to vote in the PN leadership election. It is unclear how many of the collected votes were in fact cast.

The electoral commission headed by Joe Borg condemned the falsification of signatures as “an illicit electoral practice”.

The report was concluded just two days before the 16 September election, but was not divulged to any of the two candidates – Adrian Delia and Chris Said – or even to Opposition leader Simon Busuttil.

Today The Times confirmed that Debono could face disciplinary charges and in a separate editorial titled ‘Dark shadows at Pieta’’ the newspaper which openly backed Alex Perici Calascione in the leadership race suggested that Debono should have benn suspended forthwith. The newspaper also added that falsification of a signature was a criminal act. Then in a bold declaration the leader stated that the election for PN leader should be revisited.


News from Australia

Bank customers will no longer pay ATM fees when using a Commonwealth Bank ATM

AUSTRALIAN consumers could see the death of the ATM fee after our largest bank has made the bold move to axe the $2 charge.


EXCLUSIVE

THE most hated of all bank charges — the ATM fee — is set to be consigned to history in what would be a $500 million a year win for consumers.

The catalyst is a shock move by the Commonwealth which is making its 3400 ATMs fee-free for any user, regardless of who they bank with, from today.

Axing the current $2 charge for non-CBA customers will cost the nation’s biggest bank tens of millions of dollars annually and puts its rivals under extreme pressure to follow suit.

Consumer group Choice’s spokesman Tom Godfrey said the decision could trigger the death of the ATM fee.

“Accessing your money from a bank account is an essential service that should be free for everyone, rather than an inconvenience with a penalty attached,’’ Mr Godfrey said.

“The move by the Commonwealth Bank to stop charging non-customers to withdraw money is a win for consumers and sends a clear message to other banks that it’s time to axe these fees.”

Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison also urged Westpac, ANZ and NAB to respond.

 

Saturday 23 September, 2017

Nadur in pictures

The Knights of St. Peter & St. Paul during the feast of Nadur in June 2017.

The knights came from Germany, Melbourne, Portugal, Bulgaria and Malta.

Next convention is in June, 2019.

Gozitan students bear the brunt of high rents

Gozo University Group: ‘Landlords prefer a wealthy foreign tenant to a couple of Gozitan students’

By Miriam Dalli

The Gozo University Group has called on the government to find a workable solution to help students studying in Malta and be able to truly enjoy their right to free education.

Gozitan students who want to further their studies at the university have two options: commute daily between the two islands or rent a flat in Malta.

“Moving to Malta brings with it a lot of financial challenges. Some are lucky enough to own an apartment, thanks to their parents’ support. Others are not as fortunate. Several students this year have complained that they couldn’t find affordable rent. Too much money is being asked from the students,” the GUG said in a statement.

According to the Gozitan students, part of the blame is down to “new betting companies which employ foreign workers”.

“These workers can pay a monthly rent of €1,000. This means that many landlords prefer a wealthy foreign tenant to a couple of Gozitan students,” the group said.

Gozitan students receive a €500 grant every three months. According to the GUG, the average monthly rent for a student is around €150, excluding internet service and water and electricity bills.

“These students are still dependent on their parents so this is a huge financial strain on the entire family,” the GUG said.

The group has been in touch with the authorities, who believe that if the grant were to be raised, the landlords would only raise the rent even more.

“The Organisation disagrees with this argument as, even without an increased grant, rents are still going up.”

The GUG also held talks with President of the Republic, Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, in order to obtain funds “to be given to less privaleged students in order to make the transtion easier”.

“If we boast that in Malta a student has the right to free education, then why is it that Gozitans have to pay so much more money in the name of education?”

€14 million Ta’ Qali crafts village revamp launched

The newly revamped village is expected to attract up to two million tourists • Operators now enjoy legal rights over shops in Ta' Qali

A revamp of the Ta’ Qali crafts village was launched earlier today by Economy Minister Chris Cardona.

“This has been a project that had been promised in many elections, going back to 1992,” Cardona said earlier today.

The €14 million project is funded by the European Union (€10 million) and operators of the project itself (€4 million).

“This is an ambitious project, but I am positive that it will breathe new life into Ta’ Qali”, Economy Minister Chris Cardona said.

Ensuring that the investment will be fruitful will be the greatest challenge facing the restoration, Cardona continued.

It was also announced that operators have now been given legal rights over shops in Ta’ Qali, granting them use of the land for a 65-year period under emphyteutical concession.

The project is expected to be finished by the end of 2018.

New parking areas, a revamp and widening of public spaces and a new zone for children to learn artisanal crafts are part of the revamp envisioned for the Ta’ Qali Crafts village.

“This project will not only regenerate the area but will transform the village into a centre of excellence for Maltese artisanal crafts,” Cardona said.

Malta Enterprise has also created schemes to incentivise inheriting businesses from one generation to the next, Cardona continued.

“Family-owned businesses are at the heart of the government,” Cardona said. 

Cardona also stated that more incentives for family-owned businesses would be included in the upcoming budget.

“We always spoke about the importance of stability for businesses,” he said.

The newly revamped village can attract upwards to two million tourists, chairman of Malta Industrial Parks Tony Zahra said.

“The whole object of the exercise is to turn the place into the primary destination for artisanal crafts,” Zahra said.

"Ċertu apatija u telqa fost il-katekisti ma tirriflettix tajjeb" - L-Isqof Grech

L-Isqof ta’ Għawdex Mario Grech qal li ċertu apatija u telqa fil-katekisti ma tirriflettix tajjeb u għall-kuntrarju saħaq li l-ministeru tal-katekist għandu jkun imħeġeġ b’passjoni u entużjażmu biex jirrifletti l-laqgħa personali ma’ Ġesù.

Monsinjur Grech qal dan waqt Quddiesa għall-katekisti fis-Santwarju Nazzjonali tal-Madonna ta’ Pinu fil-bidu tas-sena kateketika.

Fl-omelija tiegħu, li fiha rrifletta dwar il-laqgħa ta’ Ġesù ma’ Mattew, l-Isqof ta’ Għawdex saħaq li l-missjoni tal-katekist hija li jiffaċilita l-laqgħa bejn Ġesù u l-bniedem tal-lum li minkejja li għandu kollox, iħossu mbattal u huwa mxennaq għas-sens tal-ħajja.

“Aħna konvinti li meta l-bniedem jiltaqa’ ma’ Ġesù, ħajtu tieħu kulur u tifsira differenti,” saħaq Monsinjur Grech u għalhekk ħeġġeġ lill-katekisti biex ikunu medjaturi bejn il-bniedem u Ġesù.

Kien hawn li tkellem dwar il-katekist u saħaq li qabel ma’ jwassal lil Ġesù lil ħaddieħor irid ikun hu li jiltaqa’ l-ewwel ma’ Ġesù.

Spjega li Ġesù kellu ħafna sabar, imħabba u mogħdrija ma’ Mattew. Insista li hekk iridu jagħmlu l-katekisti. Qabel jgħaddu d-duttrina, il-katekisti għandhom ikebbsu l-qalb.

Awguralhom li fit-twettiq tal-missjoni tagħhom, l-ewwel u qabel kollox ikellmu lill-qalb ta’ dawk li huma fdati lilhom.

“Qabel ma intom “għalliema”, intom persuni li ddewqu l-imħabba,” qal Monsinjur Grech. “Għinuhon jintebħu li intom tħobbuhom tassew...imbagħad il-proċess kateketiku jeħfief.”

Ħeġġeġ lill-katekisti biex ma jaqtgħux qalbhom. Fakkarhom li Mattew, li kien pubblikan, sar ukoll katekista meta kiteb il-Vanġelu.

“Mattew ma twelidx katekista,” qal l-Isqof. “Mattew kien imqareb. Imma minkejja kollox, il-Mulej lilu sejjaħ u fdalu l-missjoni ta’ katekista.”

Temm l-omelija tiegħu billi afda lil katekisti kollha f’idejn il-Madonna li ddeskriviha bħala l-katekista mhux biss tal-Appostli imma ta’ Ġesù nnifsu.

 

Friday 22 September, 2017

The Muscats meet the Trumps

On the fringe of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and Michelle Muscat met US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump

The Muscats and the Trumps have officially met. It all took place in New York where world leaders this week gathered for the United Nations General Assembly.  

This year, the leaders are being urged to find political solutions in addressing nuclear, terrorism, migration issues, rising sea levels and escalating tensions in Myanmar.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and Michelle Muscat met the US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump during activities link to the UNGA.

Muscat is due to address the 72nd regular session of the UN General Assembly tomorrow.

Hermann Schiavone willing to sacrifice seat to get Adrian Delia into parliament

The Nationalist MP and Delia backer denied rumours that he was being pressured into giving up his seat 

Hermann Schiavonne said he had already offered to seat to newly-elected leader Adrian Delia

Nationalist MP Hermann Schiavone has already offered his seat to newly-elected leader Adrian Delia, should it be necessary, according to the MP himself.

Writing on Facebook in response to media reports that he was being pressured into giving up his seat, insisting this was not the case.

“I want to reassure everyone that there is no pressure on me. On the contrary, I have already offered by seat if it becomes necessary,” wrote the MP.

“Not only do I believe, but I also practice the often-cited phrase about the party being greater than the individual,” he added.

News from Australia

Tony Abbott ‘assaulted’ by same-sex marriage campaigner

A COALITION MP was less than impressed with Lisa Wilkinson’s question about Tony Abbott being headbutted.

POLICE are investigating after Tony Abbott alleged that he was headbutted in the face by a tattooed pro-gay-marriage campaigner in Hobart.

The former prime minister said he was the victim of “politically motivated violence” when he was confronted by a man after attending a private function in the Tasmanian capital on Thursday afternoon.

“A fellow sung out to me, ‘Hey, Tony’. I turned around, there was a chap wearing a ‘vote yes’ badge. He says ‘I wanna shake your hand’,” Mr Abbott told 2GB radio.

“I went over to shake his hand and he headbutted me.”

Mr Abbott said his attacker “wasn’t very good at it”, but the blow did make contact.

“The only damage was a very, very slightly swollen lip,” he said. Mr Abbott did not require medical attention.

On Channel 9’s Today Show this morning, host Lisa Wilkinson cheekily suggested to government frontbencher Christopher Pyne if he was Mr Abbott’s attacker.

She opened the interview by asking if he was in Hobart last night. “Lisa, that isn’t even funny,” Mr Pyne quickly replied.

“People shouldn’t be physically attacked for having a different view about marriage equality,” he added.

Speaking last night about the incident, Mr Abbott said a member of his staff who accompanied him briefly grappled with the man, before he “scarpered off, swearing”.

“It was very disconcerting to find … someone who under the guise of wanting to shake your hand gives you a so-called Liverpool kiss,” Mr Abbott said.

“As he was scuttling away, amid all the F this and F that, was ‘you deserve it because of all the things you’ve said’. I think it was pretty clear it was … politically motivated violence.”

Mr Abbott made a formal complaint about the violence after he was contacted by Tasmania Police overnight.

Officers are on the hunt for the assailant and have urged anyone who witnessed the assault, which occurred about 4.35pm on the footpath of Morrison St, opposite Customs House Hotel, to come forward.

“Police would particularly like to hear from the other man who was allegedly involved in the incident and have urged him to come forward and contact police,” Tasmania Police said in a statement.

Mr Abbott has become a leading voice of the campaign against same-sex marriage leading up to the national postal survey on the issue.

The Liberal backbencher has repeatedly said in opinion pieces and on social media that same-sex marriage campaigners have been responsible for “bullying and hate speech” throughout the campaign.

Mr Abbott said today’s incident was “a reminder of how ugly this debate is getting”.

“The ugliness is not coming from the defenders of marriage as it’s always been understood,” he said.

“The love is love brigade aren’t showing a lot of love.”

When asked by Sky News presenter Andrew Bolt and radio host Steve Price if he had considered fighting back, the former university boxer said “the thought certainly went through my mind” but he thought better of it.

“The interesting thing about this whole debate is that it was supposed to be a trigger for bullying and intimidation and the bullying and intimidation was all supposed to come from the no side … But so far 99 per cent of the bad stuff are from the people telling us that love is love,” he said.

‘NEVER A PLACE FOR VIOLENCE’

Opposition leader Bill Shorten is among a group of “yes” campaigners that has condemned the violence against Mr Abbott.

Mr Shorten tweeted that he called his former political opponent to say he was pleased that Mr Abbott wasn’t seriously injured.

 

Thursday 21 September, 2017

Happy Independence Day

21.IX.1964 - 
Kburin b'Pajjiz Nazzjon
The day that makes us all proud of our Nation.

Air Malta employees offered 19% pay increase for higher productivity

The government has offered all Air Malta employees a 19.26% increase in salary over five years and guaranteed employment; in exchange, the airline is demanding greater productivity and flexibility

The government has offered all Air Malta employees a 19.26% salary increase over five years in exchange for greater productivity and flexibility, Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi said today.

The increase will raise the national airline’s payroll by €16 million.

“We are guaranteeing jobs for the employees, a better take-home pay and are offering them to tag their take-home pay to a certain year,” Mizzi told reporters. “We will be increasing salaries by 5% next year, 1.5% the year after and so on, amounting to 19% in the next five years.”

Flight hours will increase and cabin crew will be allocated at a ratio of one to every 50 passengers and not according to the aircraft model. Rosters are to be made more flexible, requiring more flight hours on behalf of the crew.

Mizzi faced a storm of protest after he threatened to close down the national airline and reopen it with new staff in response to a breakdown in negotiations with unions over company restructuring.

“If the employees and the unions do not understand that they need to work with the company and the government while we implement changes to make the airline profitable, the government might have no other option but to close the company down completely and re-open with new staff," he told MaltaToday on Saturday.

“We believe there is a future for the airline but it needs to change,” Mizzi said. “It needs to survive as a business going forward.”

The only way for the airline to grow and not end up like CyprusAir was to increase the fleet, routes and revenue.

He pointed to the recent launch of the Go Light product and said the airline would be changing the catering service in January, to be followed by further improvements to business class.

“Revenue doesn’t come by itself and to become cash flow positive and make good for fuel and salaries, certain adjustments were needed,” Mizzi said. “We’ve proposed something which is fair and achievable.”

To cover the €16 million pay increase, the company’s revenue will have to increase by €100 million.

“If we offer more and do not have the productivity increases we need, the company will become insolvent and the government will not be allowed to intervene,” Mizzi said.

“We do not want this to happen.”

Mizzi was characteristically upbeat about the chances of success, saying he was “positive that with the changes, Air Malta will be successful. I’m sure that common sense will prevail.”

Agreement has already been reached with the GWU on the hiving off of ground operations, which include check-in, baggage handling and cargo handling staff.

These workers are to be transferred on their current conditions to a state-owned company which will be competing to win more business, Mizzi said, promising to give more details on this in the coming days.

He urged cooperation to avoid a crisis.

“The company has a future, but we need everybody on the same side. We don’t want a situation like Sabina, Swissair and many other state owned companies.”

Mizzi said he anticipated that the airline’s financial reports will be published around November this year. Unions had been shown the financial situation as it stands at the moment.

Asked by reporters then the cut-off date for a deal to be reached was, he said the aim was to sign a five-year collective agreement in January.

“Some unions are still contesting the wage offers. As a next step I suggested they have a meeting with payroll officials to see, employee by employee, how their wage will increase over the years,” Mizzi said. “But on the financial front, we have no leeway.”

President emeritus George Abela, who acted as a go-between in the talks with the union, said that he had met union representatives and the Air Malta council this morning for an open-book overview of the airline’s financial position.

“We don’t have a stalemate with the unions, let me be clear. There was a need for everyone to see the broader picture of the company’s financial position and hear the way forward for the company.”

“Nobody lost their job, despite the inefficiencies and despite the increase of aircraft there will be the same crews, his shows how many inefficiencies there were,” Abela said.

“This is a collective national effort...everyone must lend a hand, including you,” he said appealing to the press. ”We cannot look at this company in a partisan manner. In fact, the minister insisted that we get the opposition on board, because it is the best guarantee for a good outcome.”

The unions were aware that on 1 January next year, a new collective agreement must be agreed on.

Air Malta chairman Charles Mangion said that more aircraft would need to be leased to provide the revenue needed to make the strategy work.

“The Board of directors has been given a big responsibility to increase revenue by €100 million,” Mizzi said.

Threat to close down airline “not illegal”

Mizzi denied accusations made by opposition leader Adrian Delia, that the take-it-or-leave-it offer did not respect the law. “Delia is probably not informed, because the employees will be transferred according to European directives,” he said.

The company had two options, he said. Either cut employee numbers or lower wages, but in order to increase revenue it had to scale up the organisation.

“The months of work are showing fruit,” he said, “but to add another airplane and become more profitable we must keep the same crew numbers.”

And although this would mean more flying hours for pilots, this would still compare well with industry standards, he said.

“Delia must not have understood. If the changes don’t happen there will be more costs than income, creditors will not be paid and the company will become insolvent. As a responsible government, we set up another company to avoid this.”

Puli ma jgħidx hux lest li jċedi s-siġġu; pressjoni fuq Schiavone

Id-Deputat Nazzjonalista Clyde Puli, li fl-aħħar ġimgħat appoġġja lil Adrian Delia għal Kap tal-Partit Nazzjonalista, ma weġibx jekk hux lest iċedi s-siġġu parlamentari tiegħu, jekk ħadd minn dawk li tela’ bil-by-election ma jċedihx. Hu qal li jiddeċiedi l-partit.

Intant hu mifhum li qed tiżdied il-pressjoni fuq Hermann Schiavone biex ikun hu li jċedi postu. Schiavone ikkampanja favur Delia.

Jean Pierre Debono u l-mara tiegħu Kristy, tnejn oħra li appoġġjaw il-kampanja ta’ Delia, ma weġbux għad-domandi ta’ Newsbook.com.mt.

Il-Ħadd li għadda Adrian Delia wera x-xewqa li jkun jista’ jħabbar l-isem tul il-festi tal-Indipendenza li jispiċċaw illum. Mistoqsijiet li Newsbook.com.mt bagħat lill-Partit Nazzjonalista għadhom ma ġewx imwieġba.

Jekk jirriżenja Schiavone, il-ballun ikun f’saqajn Norman Vella

Sorsi qrib il-PN qalu ma’ Newsbook.com.mt li donnu sa issa kulħadd qed iżomm sod u l-pressjoni qed iddur fuq l-MP Hermann Schiavone.  Meta l-bieraħ kien ikkuntattjat minn Newsbook.com.mt Schiavone qal li kien kmieni wisq biex jiddeċiedi.

Imma jekk jiġri hekk issir by-election. Il-kandidati tal-PN ikollhom jintrabtu li jirriżenjaw jekk jitilgħu. L-elezzjoni tkun kontestata wkoll minn Shirley Cauchi li fl-aħħar elezzjoni kienet kandidata tal-Partit Demokratiku, iżda din ma għandha l-ebda ċans li tkun eletta.

Fost il-kandidati tal-PN hemm Noel Galea, ekssindku tal-Imqabba. L-ammont ta’ voti li kien ġab kien wieħed pjuttost żgħir u ċ-ċans li jitla’ hu jkun remot ħafna. Galea kkampanja għal Adrian Delia.

Hemm ukoll Mary Grace Vella li ġabet madwar 500 vot. Hija wkoll ikkampanjat favur Delia. Iċ-ċansijiet tagħha huma aktar minn dawk ta’ Nick Refalo u Stanley Zammit (PN) li ċ-ċansijiet tagħhom li jitilgħu huma wkoll remoti.

Iżda l-kandidat li probabbilment jitla’ huwa Norman Vella. Huwa kien l-aħħar kandidat li waqa’ biex bil-voti tiegħu mbagħad tela’ Schiavone. Dawn il-voti jerġgħu lura għand Vella f’każ ta’ by-election. Tul il-kampanja għal kap, Vella ma ħax xi pożizzjoni pubblika qawwija favur xi kandidat jew ieħor.

Hemm imbagħad Nick Refalo u  Stanley Zammit (li ċ-ċansijiet tagħhom li jitilgħu huma wkoll remoti).

Deċiżjoni fl-aħjar interessi tal-Partit – Puli

Ma’ Newsbook.com.mt, Puli qal li d-deċiżjoni ta’ min iċedi s-siġġu parlamentari lill-Kap tal-Partit magħżul mit-tesserati, ma għandhiex tibbaża ruħha fuq xewqat personali ta’ individwi, imma fuq f’inhu l-aħjar interess tal-partit li jirrapreżentaw.

Id-Deputat kien qed iwieġeb mistoqsija ta’ Newsbook.com.mt dwar jekk hux lest iċedi s-siġġu Parlamentari wara li lbieraħ, Membru Parlamentari tal-PN qal ma’ Newsbook.com.mt li għandhom ikunu dawk li appoġġjaw lil Delia li jċedu posthom.

Iżda Clyde Puli fakkar fil-kliem ta’ Adrian Delia: “ħadd m’huwa akbar mill-partit,” u għalhekk insista li huwa l-partit li jiddeċiedi kull membru xi rwol għandu jaqdi fl-aħjar interess tal-partit. “Hekk dejjem sar u hekk għandu jibqa’ jsir,” insista Clyde Puli.

Kien hawn li saħaq li  l-għażla ma għandhiex tkun ibbażata fuq l-interess ta’ min ġie elett mill-ewwel għadd fl-elezzjoni ġenerali.

Insista li “wisq inqas” għandha tkun ibbażata fuq l-interess ta’ dawk eletti bil-by-election, għax fi kliemu, dawn kienu eletti biss wara deċiżjoni tal-eżekuttiv tal-partit li jagħżel hu liema distretti jċedu l-kandidati eletti fuq żewġ distretti, “biex jitilgħu kandidati u mhux oħra li ma kinux għażla awtomatika tal-poplu.”

Clyde Puli qal li bl-istess mod, l-għażla ma tistax tkun ibbażata fuq l-interess ta’ min appoġġja u emmen f’Adrian Delia u jħossu komdu jaħdem miegħu, u lanqas fl-interess ta’ min appoġġja xi kandidat ieħor, kif fi kliemu kellu dritt li jagħmel.

Fakkar li Adrian Delia huwa l-għażla ċara tat-tesserati u għalhekk ħadd mhu akbar mir-rieda ta’ dawn. Insista li d-Deputati kollha tal-Oppożizzjoni telgħu taħt l-arma tal-Partit Nazzjonalista, inkluż dawk tal-Partit Demokratiku li fi kliemu, l-Eżekuttiv tal-PN “kważi rregalalhom s-siġġu tal-Viċi Kap tiegħu.”

“Nies li jippontifikaw ħafna fuq is-sens ta' diċenza fil-politika għandhom jagħmlu l-aktar ħaġa diċenti u ma' jinterferux bil-legaliżmi, fuq għażla ċara u demokratika għall-għanijiet personali tagħhom,” temm jgħid Clyde Puli.

'PL has created a soulless state' - Delia reiterates commitment to protect 'Maltese values'

Newly elected  PN Leader Adrian Delia has said that the Labour Party has created a soulless state which is attacking Maltese values, in a politically charged and loud address at the party's Independence Day celebrations.

Delia, who spoke passionately throughout his speech, called on Prime Minister Joseph Muscat to come out and defend matters of moral conscience.

"Give the free vote to all MPs both PL and PN, as we should have done, on laws that affect morals."

He said the party has one direction, to stop the PL from attacking the values that make us Maltese, criticising possible proposals on surrogacy, the regulation of prostitution, and the legalisation of marijuana.

On the waste to energy scheme proposal, he said that PL has fooled the nation by pretending to be the party for the environment, while also turning to the over development and the lack of public spaces in the country

He began his address by turning to his youth, he spoke of his involvement with the PN during the 1980s,  and he said it was in these moments that he knew that everyone had the obligation and the duty to do something to change the destiny of your country.

He said that he has to work to get the respect of those who did not support him, but ensured he will also be looking forward to the future for the country.  On the Malta's Independence, he said to loud cheers that the PN was always on the good side of history, while praising the population's love for the country and their catholic faith. 

"In tough moments, the PN did not choose the easy path, but the right one."

Delia said that the country had one resource, and that was the Maltese people. 

"We were always capable of raising to the challenge."On the Labour Party, he said that the weapon the party always used was fear. 

"We are in a historic moment for the country, and this time we do not have a fight against a foreign invader, colonialism, independence, but we have a fight again for good, for work, for justice; we have to fight against the corruption with more determination."

Delia, who has faced serious allegations for journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia throughout the campaign, some of which he failed to adequately answer , said that "we also have a battle against hate, the country is too small to fight amongst ourselves.'Where is the surplus?' - Delia says government benefits the few

The PN Leader used the address to attack the government and claimed that it did not serve the nation's interests.

Delia said that precariousness is a serious issue that needs to be addressed, especially during a period of supposed economic prosperity. 

"Where is the surplus? In whose pockets? In pockets of the few or the many?"

"We need to find alternative solution to those who are on the outside of society. There is a new kind of poverty in this country."

He said that corruption is affecting the people the most due to the weakening of institutions which serve them. 

"If he really believes in transparency, he should show us the agreements that happened behind our backs!"

Criminality was all the rise, he said, while the government stayed talking about positive figures.

"Where is the government of the people? Where is the government of Taghna Lkoll? Where is the government of the Maltese?"

Delia said that the PN will become the party that represents the whole country's interests.

On the criticisms put forward to the PN that it had been too negative throughout the previous legislature, he said the party had to change and become the party that represents the interests of the country.

"The opposition will fight a larger battle, not for itself, but for the Maltese population. This is a revolution in thought within the PN."

He said that the government has failed in the educational field.

"Where is the surplus? Has anyone seen it? Are we building better schools? Are we improving the educational sector?"

"Where are the new sectors in the economy? Where are the new initiatives? All the fields that are doing well and allowing the country to perform were all PN projects."

Transport and infrastructure have been issues that have long plagued the country, Delia said that the government pretends that the country does not have an issue in these fields. 


He said traffic is coming at a heavy price on people both economically and mentally. 

"We need to look to the future for solutions, we need to be revolutionary," Delia said, without mentioning any particular possible initiative.

He criticised Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi's contingency plan for Air Malta, saying that the government does not care about the people and the proposal is practically telling unions to either follow its path or else it would start a new company.

Mizzi has made it clear in press conferences that the plan is the last resort, and is the only option when a company faces solvency.  


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