The Sunday Times: Whipped by Auntie Justyne

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2020-12-20T08:12:34+01:00Sun, 20th Dec '20, 08:02|

From my article in The Sunday Times today: "The government never minded having senior government officials indulge in a bit of critic-bashing that would be popular with the rank and file. "Consider Tony Zarb, paid advisor on Konrad Mizzi’s staff, calling Occupy Justice activists whores more fitting in Strait Street than Castille Place. Consider Jason [...]

Murder on the Malta Express wins the National Book Prize

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2020-12-18T19:31:25+01:00Fri, 18th Dec '20, 19:32|

It is with pride and gratitude that my co-authors, John Sweeney and Carlo Bonini, and I receive tonight the National Book Prize for literary non-fiction awarded by Malta's National Book Council. Murder on the Malta Express: Who Killed Daphne Caruana Galizia was first published in Malta by Midsea Books and was then released worldwide by [...]

Does Mario Cutajar fear his staff forget what he looks like?

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2020-12-18T08:33:10+01:00Fri, 18th Dec '20, 08:33|

"Ittraħbar" is circulated to civil servants with news from the principal permanent secretary's office. The name of the publication is a literal riff on 'newsletter'. Geddit? My daughter would palm her face round about now. So the newsletter is all of 8 full-colour pages. And apart from the fact that Mario Cutajar is the cover [...]

GUEST POST: Blockchain blocked

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2020-12-17T14:48:40+01:00Thu, 17th Dec '20, 14:48|

Now that the Blockchain related laws are in effect, and our vision in making Malta the Blockchain Island is materializing, we can start looking at new economic niches, finding ways to incorporate them in our ecosystem. We want Malta to become a powerhouse of economic innovation. – Silvio Schembri, July 2018 Blockchain is the technology [...]

Repubblika’s Robert Aquilina warns prime minister

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2020-12-16T15:20:57+01:00Wed, 16th Dec '20, 19:00|

A socially-distanced vigil is being broadcast right now from Great Siege Square in Valletta marking 38 months since the killing of Daphne Caruana Galizia. Proceedings opened with a brief speech by Repubblika's president, Robert Aquilina, and a stark warning to Prime Minister Robert Abela. Robert Aquilina said that as was expected, the NGO did not [...]

If you’re reading this

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2020-12-16T11:10:15+01:00Wed, 16th Dec '20, 11:10|

This website needs your financial support to go on. Doing this doesn't come easy. It doesn't come cheap. If you're here, it's because you agree that there's value in independent journalism and commentary that does not depend on advertisers or grants that come with strings attached. The only strings should be attached to you, and [...]

GUEST POST: Analysis of Steward Malta’s 2019 accounts

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2020-12-16T10:37:26+01:00Wed, 16th Dec '20, 10:37|

This article is a continuation of my previous analysis of Vitals Global Healthcare which was registered on 13 May 2015, and which, on 30 November 2015 signed the services concession agreement with the Government for the redevelopment, maintenance, management and operation of the sites of St Luke’s Hospital, Karin Grech Rehabilitation Hospital and the Gozo [...]

GUEST POST: Did you say irrelevant?

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2020-12-09T11:23:48+01:00Wed, 16th Dec '20, 10:30|

‘Irrelevant!?’ - How insensitive! What a morbid, dark, evil sense of humour! 16th October 2017 – 2.35 p.m. - ‘There are crooks everywhere you look now. The situation is desperate.’ - 25 minutes later Daphne Caruana Galizia is assassinated. I wonder how many of us had ever imagined how prophetic her incisive last piece of conversation [...]

PODCAST: Robert Abela is a self-fulfilling prophecy

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2020-12-16T09:41:44+01:00Wed, 16th Dec '20, 09:41|

Manuel Delia · Robert Abela is a self-fulfilling prophecy When Robert Abela’s predecessor lost all control of circumstances and authority over events, he signed the document he had been rejecting for two years: setting up an inquiry to determine whether the state, including of course the government he had been leading, was at least in [...]

European Press Freedom NGO “condemns” Neville Gafà acquittal

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2020-12-16T04:35:51+01:00Tue, 15th Dec '20, 16:39|

The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) as part of the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) has condemned today’s court ruling in the criminal proceedings against Neville Gafà for threats he made on Twitter against Italian journalist Nello Scavo. “We take note of this verdict,” commented Scavo. “This case has given me an [...]

Confession

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2020-12-15T14:15:44+01:00Tue, 15th Dec '20, 14:15|

In an earlier post, I wrote about Keith Schembri declaring himself governed by the ethics of a tax avoider and applying that as a justification, as he sees it, for his conduct in public office. That wasn’t the worst bit of the character evidence he gave on his own behalf yesterday at the Daphne inquiry. [...]

When the masked thief was made bank manager

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2020-12-15T13:38:25+01:00Tue, 15th Dec '20, 13:38|

There’s more to take out of Keith Schembri’s testimony yesterday. None of this is necessarily new as such. And these specific observations may not make an enormous difference to the inquiry’s search for any share the state may have had in allowing Daphne to be killed. But Keith Schembri’s testimony is also an eye-witness account [...]

Open season on journalists and magistrates

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2020-12-15T13:36:09+01:00Tue, 15th Dec '20, 13:36|

Let’s see how Magistrate Charmaine Galea feels about this. “You better stop your dirty business. If not, we will be stopping you.” In case of doubt, ‘you’ is ‘you, Magistrate Charmaine Galea’. Do you feel threatened, ma’am? Or do you think that given the way you have expressed yourself, I have a sacred right to [...]

The line behind Keith Schembri

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2020-12-15T11:57:42+01:00Tue, 15th Dec '20, 11:57|

Here’s another take-away from yesterday’s testimony by Keith Schembri to the Daphne Caruana Galizia inquiry. Keith Schembri recalls the time when he had been diagnosed with cancer. He emailed his resignation from the post of PM’s chief of staff. “I had cancer,” he told the inquiry yesterday. “If it were for me I would have [...]

Daphne Inquiry Board tells PM: ‘We’re not done yet’

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2020-12-14T17:10:20+01:00Mon, 14th Dec '20, 17:10|

The Daphne Caruana Galizia inquiry Board reminded the prime minister that only they can decide when they’ve heard enough evidence to fulfil their terms of reference. In a decree by Board Chairman Judge Michael Mallia, the Board responded to repeated calls by Prime Minister Robert Abela to shut down the inquiry by tomorrow because, the [...]

So the bit about the biggest lie in Maltese political history was the biggest lie in Maltese political history

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2020-12-14T16:57:46+01:00Mon, 14th Dec '20, 16:57|

  In a moment of flagrant disloyalty to his “friend” and former boss Joseph Muscat, Keith Schembri told Jason Azzopardi at the Daphne Caruana Galizia inquiry this morning, that he knew the 2017 election would be held in June by March. Just because he said that I’m not going to dismount from my suspicions that [...]

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