Citizenship is priceless

2021-04-30T11:07:01+02:00Fri, 30th Apr '21, 11:07|

Repubblika has this morning published a detailed policy paper that gives reasons for the organisation’s belief that Malta should not be selling its citizenship. Some of the arguments are what you would expect given all we know about Malta’s passport-selling scheme. But this is also an exercise that looks again at what citizenship really means [...]

Free passes

2021-04-30T09:33:25+02:00Fri, 30th Apr '21, 09:33|

I can’t imagine that Mark Camilleri’s opinions have the gravity to reroute the river of history inside the Labour Party. So I’ll take these remarks he made recently about pressure on Joseph Muscat to fire Keith Schembri to reflect what he imagines happened, rather than what really happened. But it’s interesting that Mark Camilleri says [...]

GUEST POST: Malta is better than them

2021-04-30T08:32:38+02:00Fri, 30th Apr '21, 08:32|

“The European Parliament is deeply concerned about the latest revelations in the investigations into the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia, in particular of the possible involvement of government ministers and political appointees and reiterates that the recent revelations raise new questions about the case and related investigations.” European Parliament Resolution – 29 April 2021 Shame, [...]

Letters from Strasbourg

2021-04-29T15:42:37+02:00Thu, 29th Apr '21, 15:42|

From the building of the European Parliament came the result of a resolution MEP Alex Agius Saliba said would be debated, voted on and approved over his dead body. I am reliably informed he’s still alive. Labour MEP’s voted against the resolution as did a smattering of other MEPs but the ayes had a landslide: [...]

Vacancy in the Speaker’s chair

2021-04-29T14:11:36+02:00Thu, 29th Apr '21, 14:11|

Anġlu Farrugia’s non-decision of yesterday is spectacular in its inadequacy. By refusing to do one of the very few things the Speaker of Malta’s Parliament is actually expected to do (apart from listening to interminable and unproductive rhetoric), he has made himself redundant. But that’s just the start. I won’t bore you with the esoterica [...]

It’s only a quarter of a billion ta

2021-04-28T18:21:34+02:00Wed, 28th Apr '21, 18:21|

Read Ivan Martin’s detailed Times of Malta coverage of the findings by the National Auditor on the massive and massively rotten St Vincent de Paul residence expansion contracted directly to James Caterers and the DB Group. The auditor sees no reason to justify the government’s decision to ignore the law on public procurement when in [...]

GUEST POST: Could this have been the Egrant roadmap?

2021-04-28T12:30:09+02:00Wed, 28th Apr '21, 10:31|

The author, who is known to me, had written about this subject on this blog some time ago. So far, investigators have been unable – maybe intentionally – to come up with the name of who was the ‘original’ local mysterious real owner of Panamanian registered company Egrant. Why I lay stress on the word [...]

UPDATED: Something Anthony Abela Medici prefers forgotten

2021-04-29T11:10:53+02:00Wed, 28th Apr '21, 10:01|

Updated at 10:25 of 28 April 2021 The newly confirmed Commissioner for Voluntary Organisations, Anthony Abela Medici, has a chip on his shoulder the size of a boulder. He’s harboured a grudge for a long, long time. The chevalier, as he insists on calling himself, joined the civil service in 1981 on salary scale 7 [...]

Government confirms Anthony Abela Medici as Rottweiler over NGOs

2021-04-27T16:10:51+02:00Tue, 27th Apr '21, 16:10|

The controversial Commissioner for Voluntary Organisations, Anthony Abela Medici, has just been confirmed in his post by the government for another 3 years. A notice in the Government Gazette today gave the news. Recent decisions by Anthony Abela Medici have raised the ire of several NGOs as new rules restricting voluntary donations to NGOs have [...]

An old story with a new flavour

2021-04-27T15:37:54+02:00Tue, 27th Apr '21, 15:37|

That is how Robert Abela described the Passport Papers. He’s right of course. Long before these leaks, we understood the government was lying about “talent attracted to Malta” by this scheme. Everyone had figured out the passport-buyers pretended to live here but didn’t. Most had heard of the links with Cambridge Analytica and voter manipulation. [...]

Don’t be fooled by mealy-mouthed drivel. Robert Abela is undermining the institution scrutinising his government.

2021-04-27T15:00:07+02:00Tue, 27th Apr '21, 15:00|

Robert Abela said today it’s “worth having the debate” on whether the law on the commissioner for standards in public life should be changed to rule out a former MP. This sounds like a theoretical discussion but it really has a simple purpose: giving people a reason to discredit George Hyzler because he falls short [...]

Pay me to vote for me

2021-04-26T15:13:48+02:00Mon, 26th Apr '21, 15:13|

Michael Falzon announced today the government is dishing out €50 million among 5,000 people as compensation for an “anomaly” from 1979. On average these guys will be picking up a €10,000 cheque. The minister stood in front of a banner headline “insaħħu lill-ħaddiem” (trans: strengthening the worker). It’s a slogan right of the DDR circa [...]

GUEST POST: Joseph’s passport papers

2021-04-26T14:26:05+02:00Mon, 26th Apr '21, 10:52|

Joseph Muscat’s 2013 ‘roadmap’ was planned way before the day of the election that year. Joseph and his parrots kept repeating ad nauseam that they had a roadmap ready but they never gave details of where it was going to lead. The people learnt about it soon after Labour took power. A bright light-house on [...]

Our competitors are laughing

2021-04-26T08:39:22+02:00Mon, 26th Apr '21, 08:39|

It is not unreasonable to have doubts about an economic activity built on vice, but the gaming industry is today a major economic player, a large employer, and one of the very few economic activities that proved essentially covid-proof. The callousness with which the government is treating the industry is staggering. While vice-minister Alex Muscat [...]

You must return here with a shrubbery

2021-04-26T08:16:41+02:00Mon, 26th Apr '21, 08:16|

Carmelo Abela is defending himself for full-page adverts taken out in newspapers last year. Half the advert amounted to a picture of himself. The other half was made of vague and empty slogans. The intent was clear: improve his profile and PR. The cost was paid by taxpayers because he’s a government minister. Carmelo Abela’s [...]

THE SUNDAY TIMES: Show us the money

2021-04-25T07:27:30+02:00Sun, 25th Apr '21, 07:27|

From my article in The Sunday Times today: "For this, journalists have been branded traitors and liars. When a committee at the UK House of Commons quoted an investigation published on my website when it analysed the relationship between Henley & Partners and Cambridge Analytica, the Maltese government reacted angrily. It issued a diplomatic note [...]

Fresh conflict of interest accusations against Rosianne Cutajar filed at Council of Europe

2021-04-22T14:17:06+02:00Thu, 22nd Apr '21, 14:17|

Dutch MP Pieter Omtzigt who authored the report that led to the Council of Europe’s resolution forcing Malta to open an inquiry into the killing of Daphne Caruana Galizia has filed a complaint today with the body’s ethic committee about the conduct of Rosianne Cutajar. When the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly debated Pieter Omtzigt’s [...]

RTO ħi

2021-04-22T14:13:47+02:00Thu, 22nd Apr '21, 14:13|

Read this Times of Malta report about hunters trespassing private property shooting at birds within metres of people working the fields. I was struck by a bit in the report that said the farm hands rushed out to ask help from policemen who happened to be nearby. They asked for their help because a bully [...]

I’d call that a win

2021-04-22T13:49:00+02:00Thu, 22nd Apr '21, 13:49|

Four new judges were sworn in today. The prime minister and government ministers were not involved in any stage of their selection. Except for Anna Mallia, who seems bothered that she wasn’t sworn in as a judge today as well, no one in the legal profession had any adverse comments about today’s appointees. Anna Mallia [...]

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