Author: Matthew Xuereb

Local Government Minister José Herrera has shot down a by-law proposed by the Naxxar local council to stop caravans and camper vans from parking permanently along the Coast Road, saying the issue is being discussed nationally. “Since the subject matter of the by-law was being discussed at national level, the proposed by-law will not be approved,” a spokesperson for the ministry told Times of Malta. However, the council, which unanimously approved the by-law last month, has said it will take legal action to ensure that the regulation is brought into effect in the locality’s best interests. The decision to take…

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Prime Minister Robert Abela on Wednesday held a meeting with the family of Daphne Caruana Galizia, just days after the publication of the inquiry report and his public apology for the state’s shortcomings in its indirect contribution to the assassination. Sources said the meeting, described as “very cordial”, was attended by Caruana Galizia’s husband Peter, two of their sons and her sister, Corinne. Details of the meeting remain private, following agreement between the parties. However, the sources said discussions revolved around the implementation of recommendations made by the board of inquiry. The issue of compensation to the family, which Abela…

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Naxxar local council has unanimously decided to go ahead with its planned by-law to stop caravans and camper vans from parking permanently along the Coast Road, after it received no feedback from the government about its proposed regulation. The entire council also decided to take all possible legal steps to enforce the by-law, which had been sent to Local Government Minister Josè Herrera but appears to have stalled at the ministry. The by-law will now be re-sent to the minister for publication in The Malta Government Gazette, enabling it to come into force. Mayor Anne Marie Muscat Fenech Adami told…

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The Attorney General has appealed the sentence of community work that was handed down to two architects found guilty of Miriam Pace’s involuntary homicide, Times of Malta has learnt. The two architects, Roderick Camilleri, 37, and Anthony Mangion, 73, have also filed their own appeal against the sentence meted out to them earlier this month.  Camilleri and Mangion were found to be criminally liable over the Ħamrun house collapse that killed Pace last year and were also found guilty of involuntary damage to third party property. However, Magistrate Joe Mifsud spared them jail in view of their clean criminal record,…

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A group of French students who tested positive for COVID-19 left Malta on Thursday afternoon on a medical flight to France, while a group of Spanish students who also tested positive will be leaving Malta on Friday on a similar flight.  The special Boeing 737 plane, chartered by the Malta Tourism Authority, landed in Malta just before 2pm. The infected students arrived on the apron at the Malta International Airport in a coach and some of them arrived by ambulance. It is still not known how many students were on the flight. An ambulance arrived with students infected with COVID-19 who…

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The Planning Authority has approved a controversial apartment block at the edge of Naxxar’s urban conservation area following revised plans which improved the transition between the old and the new. The project, spread on 3,100-square metres, is a vacant plot at il-Gwejdja, partly facing Pjazza Ċelsi and surrounded by two new streets off Triq il-Markiż Scicluna. It is a five-storey block of 71 maisonettes, apartments and penthouses on a receded floor as well as an underlying complex of 78 garages. The developer is Charles Camilleri. The site, which is currently being used for agricultural purposes, lies partly within Naxxar’s urban…

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A group of students who tested positive for COVID-19 will be departing this afternoon on a medical flight to France, Times of Malta can reveal. The special Boeing 737 plane, chartered by the Malta Tourism Authority, will fly up to 128 patients to France so they can recover in their home country. The flight will be operated by ASL Airlines France, which specialises in sanitary and medical flights. It is not known whether similar flights – for COVID-positive patients from other countries – are being planned. An MTA spokesman confirmed that close to 200 students had already been repatriated in…

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A judge has barred the Malta College for Arts, Science and Technology from transferring one of its most experienced and qualified lecturers to a secondary school, effectively demoting him to a teacher, after the court upheld his claims that the termination of his employment was a vindictive one.  The court noted that the termination and order to transfer to another school was issued after a series of efforts to stop him from teaching and an order banning him from communicating with his students. Mr Justice Francesco Depasquale, presiding over the First Hall of the Civil Court, upheld a complaint by…

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Civil servants will have the right to disconnect as from October before it becomes an EU directive, Times of Malta has learnt. Principal Permanent Secretary Mario Cutajar said government workers will be given this right as from October, when its remote working policy comes into force.  The option to disconnect refers to a worker’s right to be able to disengage from work and refrain from participating in work-related communications, such as phone calls, emails, WhatsApp messages and other messages outside their working hours. The directive, which was spearheaded by Maltese MEP Alex Agius Saliba, was approved by the European Parliament…

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The environment watchdog, two local councils, NGOs and scores of residents have objected to a proposal to turn a site previously earmarked for a 26-floor hotel into a nine-storey block of offices, shops and residences, situated at the edge of the protected valley of Wied Għomor, in St Julian’s. The objectors say the site, though within the development zone, is designated as a public open space in the local plan and ought to remain so. The site sits just outside the Regional Road tunnels. Landowner Carmelo Borg has submitted a ‘development control’ application to change the zoning of the site…

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