Former Labour secretary-general appointed Valletta 2018 chairman

Jason Micallef to be the new chairman of the V18 board under the ‘supervision’ of outgoing chairman David Felice. Mario de Marco: "a culture change we did not need."

Teodor Reljic
2 May 2013, 12:00am
Jason Micallef
Jason Micallef

Parliamentary secretary for culture Jose Herrera has appointed former One TV chairman Jason Micallef as chairman of the V18 board - the board that will lead Valletta as the European Capital for Culture in 2018.

Herrera, who announced the appointment during a press conference on the V18 programme this afternoon, said Micallef's role has yet to be officialised.

The announcement was made despite government sources having denied to MaltaToday that a decision was taken to appoint Micallef as chairman of the V18 board.

It also appears that OPM officials had no knowledge about Herrera making such an announcement.

Herrera also said that outgoing chairman David Felice will "supervise" Micallef's work.

In a reaction, former culture minister and PN leadership contender Mario de Marco expressed dismay at the choice of Micallef for the role, dubbing it as "entirely partisan".

"When I wrote a letter of appointment for David Felice, I took into consideration his experience within the cultural sector, his love for our capital city and his professional competence - a decision which was vindicated by Valletta's success in acquiring the title of European Capital for Culture in 2018"

De Marco added that the process to secure the title for Valletta came after full involvement with the then in opposition Labour Party.

"I would keep in regular contact with Owen Bonnici and Evarist Bartolo over this initative, and in fact we even set up a parliamentary committee to oversee this important event - which will not only impact Valletta but Malta as a whole.

"In light of this, I have to express disappointment that a role which was originally not in the least bit partisan has clearly taken on a partisan hue. This is a culture change we did not need," de Marco said.
Teodor Reljic is MaltaToday's culture editor and film critic. He joined t...