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USA UK and Malta News
10/05/2012 - 23:23

Malta news: scathing criticism

Malta news: scathing criticism - Adrian Vassallo in scathing criticism of 'dictatorial' Joseph Muscat - Government secures majority - Court: Fracas in court as free for all ensues.

Malta news: scathing criticism
Court: Fracas in court as free for all ensues
The accused involved in the cases of two lesbians who were allegedly attacked by two young men and a woman for their sexual orientation, are likely to face another case in court – they fought again yesterday, in the court building’s corridors as they were leaving the magistrate’s hall. The claimed original beating occurred last January and yesterday Magistrate Joseph Apap Bologna continued hearing the compilation of evidence. The two lesbians are accused as well, together with the young men and the woman. Yesterday’s court fracas involved all five of them, and apparently members of their families, and friends. Being under bail it was normal for there not to be a police escort. And as the accused left the magistrate’s hall, someone apparently shouted out something insulting and uproar broke out, necessitating the intervention of police and court staff. Two of the women were pulling at each other’s hair, punches were thrown and when things were quietening down, one of the girls broke out crying. One of the girls had her glasses broken, the other lost a shoe. It was quite a melee and rather noisy but fortunately not over long, only about three minutes. No one was seriously injured. In court, Magistrate Apap Bologna had heard the evidence of one of the young men, who is accused with harassing the two girls because of their orientation, and slightly injuring one of them in a fight.(independent.com.mt) Homophobia should not be welcome in our world.

Government secures majority
Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi yesterday evening secured an outright majority in Parliament for the first time in months as the House approved two crucial money bills, including the budget implementation bill, with 35 votes in favour and 34 against. The Prime Minister can now breathe a huge sigh of relief following the internal rift with backbencher Franco Debono, who had threatened to withdraw his support several times. But it did not come without cost. Prior to the votes being taken Dr Gonzi had to endure further embarrassment following another barrage against him and Richard Cachia Caruana by Dr Debono. After the votes were taken, the Prime Minister said: “The bills have passed, the most important thing now is to concentrate on creating jobs.” At the beginning of the sitting, an agreement had been reached to do away with parliamentary questions to gain an extra 30 minutes for the debate, things proceeded slower than expected with the session finishing at 10.23pm and Parliament adjourning for Monday. At times the debate verged on the ridiculous, with clause 37 – which was the last one – reserving unpleasant surprises as it contained an infinite number of amendments (up to sub-clause ‘ac‘) after going through the entire vocabulary - more than 26 votes. At one point prompted the deputy speaker to ask the proper pronunciation in Maltese of sub-clause ‘y’. The ‘q’ and ‘a-a’ clauses drew similar reactions of mirth.(independent.com.mt) It must first ensure that democracy works well.

Adrian Vassallo in scathing criticism of 'dictatorial' Joseph Muscat
Labour MP Adrian Vassallo made scathing criticism of Labour leader Joseph Muscat tonight, saying he viewed an attack on him after the divorce vote in parliament as 'dictatorial'. He also said he no longer attends meetings of the parliamentary group because the group is simply a 'rubber stamp' of what the leader wants, although he admitted that his disenchantment started when then Labour leader Alfred Sant did not appoint him to a party committee discussing the policy against drugs. Dr Vassallo, who has announced he will not stand for the forthcoming election, said that Dr Muscat has still not spoken to him since he informed him in writing on March 25 that he would not seek re-election. "He does not even look at me in Parliament," Dr Vassallo told interviewer Lou Bondi on Bondi + Dr Vassallo said there had been several occasions, even before other elections, when he considered bowing out because he did not consider Parliament conducive of his attitude of plain talking, but people eventually managed to convince him stand. This time, he said, he was led to decide against seeking re-election because of the divorce issue. Dr Vassallo sneered at the claim that the PL had no position in favour of divorce and said one only needed to see how the party acted in practice, especially how its station presented the news with Evarist Bartolo (one of the leaders of the Divorce Movement) also the head of news. He complained of a campaign against him as soon as he declared his  opposition to divorce. The only time he was invited to a PL television programme, he said, he was booed by a hall full of Labourites who then applauded Nationalist MP Jeffrey Pullicino Orlando, in what he viewed as a stage managed event. He recalled that after the 'Yes' camp won the referendum Dr Muscat had said that MPs could abstain or vote in favour (of divorce). Just before the vote in parliament, Dr Vassallo said, he had asked deputy leader Anglu Farrugia whether they really had a free vote, because he intended to vote against anyway. Dr Farrugia could not give him an answer, but consulted Dr Muscat and came back to tell him he had a free vote.(timesofmalta.com) The intra-parliamentary quarrels are never obvious to manage.

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