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USA UK and Malta News
21/02/2012 - 20:27

Malta news: Air Malta

Malta news: Air Malta - Myth busted: Law banning political satire only an illusion - Coach, referee convicted of trying to bribe goalkeeper - Air Malta: New management should provide explanations - PL spokesman.

Malta news: Air Malta
Myth busted: Law banning political satire only an illusion
We have been living under an illusion for over 70 years where people believed that political satire is prohibited at law, when it is not, announced Tourism, Culture and the Environment Minister Mario de Marco, at a press conference yesterday. At another press conference on Saturday 4 February, when details of the programme for Carnival 2012 were given, Dr de Marco had called for more improvisation and said it is high time that the element of political satire was reintroduced to Carnival, and that he intends to discuss the matter with a view to making the necessary legislative changes in the near future. Such a move would be in line with initiatives taken over the past weeks, particularly those regarding the new self-classification rules for stage productions and films. Yesterday afternoon, at the height of Carnival celebrations, Dr de Marco announced that following studies carried out by the Attorney General, it is now clear that there has never been any law banning political satire during Carnival, or any other event. He added that political satire reflects the maturity of society. In reality, political satire exists all year round, on television, during Christmas pantomimes and even at the Nadur Carnival, but not during official Carnival activities. Expressing his opinion on the matter, Dr de Marco remarked that he felt society was mature enough to be able to take a dose of people poking fun at one another, politicians included.(independent.com.mt) After all politicians are men like others, it is natural that we can laugh at them. Being reasonable and proper course!

Coach, referee convicted of trying to bribe goalkeeper
Former Albanian coach Ilir Pelinku and former FIFA referee Joe Attard were today convicted of trying to bribe a goalkeeper before an international club match in 2008. Each were condemned to a suspended jail term and fined €500. The Malta Football Association had imposed a life ban to both men in 2010 after their involvement in the attempt to rig the UEFA Cup preliminary round match between Marsaxlokk and Slaven Belupo of Croatia. A probe was launched soon after the match. Magistrate Antonio Micallef Trigona heard how the two men had approached then Marsaxlokk goalkeeper Saviour Darmanin, asking him to give the visiting team a three goal advantage. Mr Darmanin refused. Marsaxlokk lost 4-0 defeat but the goalkeeper was exonerated by former MFA president Joe Mifsud who said that he was in no way involved and neither were any other Marsaxlokk officials. In the judgment, Magistrate Micallef Trigona said that it was abundantly clear that on the day before the match, the accused had approached Mr Darmanin to get him to give Slaven Belupo a three goal advantage.(timesofmalta.com) A three-goal advantage is a very large advantage, I think there are more discreet ways to cheat in football. However those who have cheated had perhaps no choice except to cheat.

Air Malta: New management should provide explanations - PL spokesman
The salvation of Air Malta is paramount for the airline and the tourism industry, PL spokesman Gavin Gulia said this afternoon in his initial reaction to the European Commission's report on the proposed restructuring and the minister's reaction to it. Dr Gulia said that reacting to a report in The Times, the airline had, only yesterday, said that its slots at Heathrow and Gatwick airports, which gave it a competitive advantage, were not for sale. But in its report today the EC confirmed that Air Malta was offering to give up these slots and others by 2013. A clarification was required, he said, as giving up these slots would negatively affect the business sector. Dr Gulia said the Labour Party hoped the restructuring process would be successful but said that had the restructuring report been drawn up as it should in the first place, time would have been saved. The fact that the EC had expressed doubts showed that proposals had not been well thought out and time was essential. Someone also had to shoulder responsibility for the report. He noted that not only was the Opposition not consulted, it was not even kept informed. Dr Gulia said he submitted many parliamentary questions on aspects of the process and the reply always was that the information being requested was commercially sensitive and could not be given.(timesofmalta.com) The fact that this information is commercially sensitive is relative, however, if they are, they must be shared with precautions.

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