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ELECTION SPECIAL €1.00 Newspaper post THURSDAY • 1 JUNE 2017 • ISSUE 539 • WWW.MALTATODAY.COM.MT ELECTIONS DAYS TO GO 2 SEE BACKPAGE PAGE 2 PAGES 10,11 TRUST RATING 43.4% 37.6% +0.1pp -0.9pp Trust rating among 750 respondents between 29-31 May 2017, and difference over last survey of 28 May 2017 Labour 5 points ahead as 'no replies' increase JAMES DEBONO AN extrapolation of the survey after removing undecided voters and non-voters would give Labour 52.7%, the PN 46.3%, leaving other parties at 1%. This means that if undecided voters go to both parties in equal proportion the gap would grow to 6.4 points. But the latest survey shows 21.9% (up from 19.1% last week) who are either undecided or refused to reply to this question. However, in 2013 the last MT survey showed that undecided and no re- plies stood at 32%. Significantly while those who claim to be undecided have de- creased from 15% to 12%, those who did not reply have increased from 4.4% to 9.9%. This could be an indication that respondents became more reluctant to declare their voting intentions, a few days before the election. In fact, the percentage of respondents who accepted to participate in the survey but refused to answer the question on voting intentions is the highest in all surveys conducted during the campaign. The fact that the PL slightly wid- ened its lead amidst an increase in no replies could be an indication that this category is more PN-leaning. As things stand, the election's outcome will be determined by undecided respondents as their numbers could sway the election either way. Changes in surveys conducted during the electoral campaign have been minimal, oscillating between a 3.3 point gap in the first week of the campaign to 4.9 points now. The difference between the two parties increased from 3.3 points in the first week of the campaign to 3.9 points in the second week only to drop to 3.6 points in the third week. A week before the election it had in- creased to 4.2 points and increased again to 4.9 points in the last days. But these oscillations have to be seen in view of the margin of error of each survey. The survey still shows the Greens below the 1-point mark at 0.5%. It also shows the patriots at 0.3%. The overall percentage of respondents who would vote for PD candidates on the PN list stands at 0.9%. But the percentage of small parties could also be heavily impacted by the mar- gin of error. The same applies to political parties who were not men- tioned by respondents in this survey. Patrick Spiteri extradited to Malta on €7.4 million fraud, appears in court MATTHEW AGIUS MATTHEW VELLA DISBARRED lawyer Patrick Spiteri was yesterday remanded in custody where he is expected to be spending the next few weeks until hearings be- gin in mid-June. Spiteri was finally brought to Malta after being extradited from the UK, where he lived in Surrey, for charges that total some €7.4 million in fraud and misappropriation, where he faced arraignment before several magistrates. Spiteri was arrested in the UK on Tuesday on the strength of at least seven European Arrest Warrants. This was the third time the Maltese authorities had attempted to bring Spiteri to Malta: he had escaped from custody the first time and had resisted the second, citing a medical condition. Spike in development permits since election announcement YANNICK PACE THE number of development permits granted by the Plan- ning Authority has spiked since the general election was an- nounced on 1 May, according to data publicly available on the authority's website. According to the data, an average of 245 permits have been issued every week since the announcement, compared with 196 per week on average since the start of the year. The week period between 13 May and 19 May saw a total of 276 permits granted - the highest number of approvals so far this year. Speaking to MaltaToday in March after a similar analysis of planning permits, biologist and Environment and Resourc- es Agency board member Alan Deidun said he expected the numbers for 2017 to exceed the previous year, since the country was nearing an election. Patrick Spiteri yesterday at the law courts MALTATODAY SURVEY

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