The Malta Independent 19 April 2024, Friday
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PM gives CEOs, chairpersons ultimatum to ‘shoulder responsibility’ over Sofia inquiry

Wednesday, 28 February 2024, 13:54 Last update: about 3 months ago

Prime Minister Robert Abela said Wednesday that he is expecting those mentioned as being responsible for failings which led to the death of Jean Paul Sofia to "shoulder responsibility" by 4:30pm. If they do not come forward, the PM said he will be taking the necessary action.

Without mentioning names, Abela stated that he expects the chairperson of an entity, two CEOs of another two entities to resign. He also mentioned an employee and a number of managers who are no longer at their posts as other people who were singled out in the report.

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Speaking to journalists after publishing the report compiled by a board of inquiry into the death of Jean Paul Sofia, Abela said the government will be creating a new cabinet subcommittee aimed to implement the recommendations made.

The Prime Minister Robert Abela said that this is one of the five immediate measures that the government will be taking in order to ensure the immediate implementation of the recommendations.

Other measures include more powers to the citizen as reporting and complaints of construction site abuses will be better aided with a centralised helpline. Additionally the ministry for justice will also professionally assist in such complaints with the availability of architects and legal professionals.

Abela also said that by the beginning of summer the OHSA will have new laws which totally reform the health and safety standards on the place of work.

He also said that in terms of law any type of differentiation made between standalone buildings and other type of buildings will also cease to exist in the coming weeks.

Another measure which the PM announced was also an audit in the processes in the way government land is allocated to developers.

The Prime Minister said that as the inquiry indicated, we must recoup 50 lost years of the wrong mentality that, for the construction sector to expand, regulations had to be reduced. He said he is convinced that coupled with what has already been done, the recommendations can be implemented for the industry to keep going while at the same time putting citizens first along with all those who work in the sector.

He said the government will be doing everything in its power to reduce every risk as much as possible, by investing in prevention. "Amateurs need to pack up," he said. 

Asked whether compensation is being considered, Abela said that this is a conversation he would prefer to have with the family of Jean Paul Sofia. 

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