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USA UK and Malta News
13/03/2012 - 21:11

Malta news: storm damage

Malta news: storm damage - Damage: Strong coordinated effort to remove storm damage, debris - PN says it proposed that patients should vote in hospital - Malta keeps up pressure against FTT.

Malta news: storm damage
Damage: Strong coordinated effort to remove storm damage, debris
CPD personnel and workers from the Cleansing Directorate, within the Resources and Rural Affairs Ministry, worked against adverse weather conditions during the weekend, especially on Saturday, to remove dangers from the roads. Contacted yesterday, CPD director Patrick Murgo said members of the department removed immediate dangers including fallen walls, billboards and debris from the roads, in coordination with the Armed Forces of Malta and the Cleansing Directorate. The CPD continued to work till Sunday, when a hanging crucifix was removed from above the door of St Elena’s Church in Birkirkara. A team of CPD personnel and volunteers from the Emergency, Fire and Rescue Unit were involved. A number of trees with broken branches, or damaged from the roots, were trimmed so that no more damage occurred, while danger was removed. Mr Murgo said the damage was very extensive, and although the department issued warnings and guidelines ahead of the storm, he did not think it was going to be so widespread. While it was not the first time that Malta experienced such bad weather conditions and strong winds, he pointed out that this usually happens when winds are north westerly. Over the weekend, north east winds hit the island so this might have affected us more than usual.(independent.com.mt) It is important to repair the wrongdoing of the climate.

PN says it proposed that patients should vote in hospital
The Nationalist Party said this evening that it had been the one to propose that hospital patients should vote in hospital, rather than being taken to polling stations. Reacting to a statement issued this morning by the MUMN nurses' union, the PN said the union was acting like it was the first to have made the proposal. Yet the proposal was made by the PN at the Select Committee for Democratic Change. There had been no reaction from the Labour Party, which later walked out of the committee for partisan reasons, the PN said. In its statement, the MUMN appealed to the political parties to  amend the law to safeguard patients from hardships during voting. The union wants the Electoral Commission to take ballot boxes to hospital to eliminate the transport of patients to polling stations. Patients, it said, had the right to vote in a dignified manner. It said that although it held several meetings with the two main political parties, the electoral law was not changed and the union had to issue directives for last Saturday's local elections.(timesofmalta.com) Do not force patients to vote. In most countries, voting is a right, a civic duty but not an obligation. However, this is not a bad idea to bring the urn to the patients.

Malta keeps up pressure against FTT
Malta has not changed its position on the European Commission’s proposal to introduce a tax on financial transactions, Finance Minister Tonio Fenech told his colleagues in Brussels today. During a political discussion at a meeting of EU Finance Ministers this morning, Minister Fenech said Malta believed this proposal harmed competitiveness and jobs if introduced. “We are very sceptic and concerned on this proposal particularly on the negative impact it will have on competitiveness and jobs. “Although it is true that we need to tackle the banking system and give a clear message that they must contribute more, my concern is that the banking system is the blood veins of the world economy and punishing your own blood veins may cause problems to your own body,” he said. Mr Fenech said that the FTT is an inefficient tax and the cost to enforce it, particularly on small member states, would by far outweigh the benefits of the tax itself. Positions of member states remained the same after the discussion with no real progress achieved.(timesofmalta.com) This tax could be intended to eliminate the small states of the EU menbers.

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