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MALTATODAY 2 February 2020

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maltatoday | SUNDAY • 2 FEBRUARY 2020 "I technically have a law degree... but really, I think I probably would have still found myself in the creative industry, somehow. Maybe more behind the scenes? " Q&A Rebecca Camilleri Cultural diary Secrets of Palazzo Falson Film Little Women CLASSIFIEDS & COMMERCIALS PHOTO DANANN BREATHNACH ARTS • TV • WHAT'S ON SUNDAY • 2 FEBRUARY 2020 • ISSUE 1057 • PUBLISHED EVERY WEDNESDAY AND SUNDAY €1.95 maltatoday CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF BOLD JOURNALISM WWW.MALTATODAY.COM.MT/20YEARS maltatoday | SUNDAY • 2 FEBRUARY 2020 COMMENT What are we skinning? The (recent) life and times of former energy minister, then former tourism minister, then former OSCE delegation head, and former MTA consultant-on-€80,000- a-year, Konrad 'I've-done- nothing-wrong' Mizzi. Why are we skinning him? Because he's arguably the most fascinating embodiment of Joseph Muscat's political project, and its ensuing legacy. How so? He's not a politician's politician, let's put it that way. You mean how Donald Trump claimed not be part of the 'establishment'? Kind of, but skim off Donald Trump's machismo and replace them with an efficient roboticism. And don't forget that he famously coined the "shaaaaame-on-you ministah-fenaaaach" cat-call back in 2013. How is that fascinating? Being business savvy and opening offshore accounts is hardly exemplary behaviour in public office… But that's precisely it. As he himself has said at the peak of the many scandals that have rocked him, and the ensuing calls for resignation that have followed in their wake, he still has "plenty of supporters" on social media and otherwise who will militate for his cause no matter what. But that's just because Labour Party supporters will rally behind anyone responsible for ensuring continued economic success. That's not entirely true. Keith Schembri's claim that he was all but wholly responsible for 'ten victories' for the party didn't exactly go down all that well among sections of the party faithful. Schembri is also alleged to be implicated in far murkier stuff than Mizzi, to be fair. But then, what is the magic ingredient that has kept Mizzi afloat for so long? I think it's a mix of his powerful appointments, his talent and efficiency as a technocrat and his 'nerdy' demeanour. He's not your typical hang-jowled, streetwise pitbull for whom corruption appears to come second nature. But he appears to be on the way out. A move that came right after a lucrative appointment was given to him, then rescinded by the current Prime Minister. Which says as lot. It does. It means speaks volumes about the intertwined narratives of Konrad Mizzi and Joseph Muscat. Do say: "The trajectory of Konrad Mizzi's career can be seen as a cautionary tale against the over-reliance on successful businessmen in politics. No matter how effective they are in their posts, the perception of cleanliness is paramount in public office." Don't say: "Mizzi did nothing wrong. I would do the same if I were in his shoes. Now please leave me to fill out this byzantine tax return while I dip into my savings to pay off the car I bought five years ago." No 20. Konrad Mizzi SAVIOUR BALZAN Shoplifting, and trust rating blues PAGE 5 EDITORIAL Trust matters, for both Adrian Delia and Robert Abela PAGE 2 INTERVIEW Karmenu Vella PGS 8-9 The Skinny Malta, shrunk down Renée Laiviera Sexual harassment on the workplace: a tough row to hoe PAGE 13 "Abela has already committed much deserved attention on the subject under the wider umbrella of good governance and I trust he will be delivering on this promise" A new way to enjoy print on Sunday MaltaToday's comment and arts sections housed in the new MT2 and MT3 MATTHEW VELLA AIR Malta's journey to sus- tainable finances will once again be hampered by a year in which operational loss- es will be as much as €30 million, this newspaper has learnt. Despite various structural reforms inside the nation- al airline, with new acqui- sitions for both aircraft as well as flight management software, sources said Air Malta had suffered the brunt of reduced air travel to Med- iterranean destinations like Tunisia, as well as from the price of oil. "The losses are what they are – this remains a small airline, even though staffing practices have improved, and management today is more nimble when it comes to fly- ing new routes or stopping loss-making ones," a source with knowledge of the air- line's financial state said. The airline was previously under the remit of former tourism minister Konrad Mizzi; the national company now passes under the purview of econo- my minister Silvio Schembri. The airline will pres- ent its accounts for the year ended March 2019 later on this year, at around April. Last year, auditors Price- w a t e r h o u s e - C o o p e r s n o t e d that Air Malta was forecast- ing losses from continu- ing operations in the 2019 financial year due to market and operational matters. However, it said that "proposed transactions" mentioned in the company's business plan would "give rise to funding that meets li- quidity requirements". Air Malta faces €30m losses PAGE 2 Get the Archbishop out! PAGES 14-15 mt survey MALTATODAY SURVEY Adrian Delia faces his lowest trust rating ever as new Prime Minister Robert Abela skyrockets PAGES 14-15 Adrian Delia's worst-ever rating

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