Election Playbook: Let them eat doughnuts

One teacher’s union is declaring a trade dispute, while the other is complaining that its members did not get doughnuts. It was also a slow day for politics, so here’s your day 17 election round-up

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Teachers revolt: It’s headache after headache for the Labour government. The Malta Union of Teachers gave the government an ultimatum on Friday regarding negotiations of the sectoral agreement for educators: resolve the issue and reach a satisfactory agreement by Friday 24 May, or else. This comes following a setback in negotiations last week, which prompted the MUT to express its mistrust in the government’s Industrial Relations Unit. Meanwhile, the Education Ministry said the union should “factually inform” its members about government’s proposals.

Muscat’s Vitals: The Vitals saga is still ongoing in court, with Joseph Muscat’s lawyers asking the court to make public parts of the Vitals inquiry where he is mentioned. His lawyers filed the application as part of his court case against the State Advocate and the Attorney General – it was in this case that Muscat was given a copy of all documentation related to him that was gathered during the inquiry. If the court accepts this, this would be the first public glimpse of what information the Vitals inquiry contains, at least where Joseph Muscat is concerned.

Hospital recovery: As people get to grips with the Vitals scandal and its implications, the government has come out with plans for a new acute hospital in Gozo, as well as the regeneration of the Gozo General Hospital. Details are scant, but what we know so far is that the new hospital will have double the beds in the Gozo hospital. The wider regeneration plan will also introduce a new centre for anatomy, a new research facility, a child development assessment unit, and a new helipad. 

Doughnuts for all: Another education tidbit. The Union for Professional Educators issued a statement on Friday regarding a school head who distributed doughnuts to members of staff, but not to UPE members. Basically, the primary school within St Thomas More College held a community session for its educators, but as per UPE directives, the union’s members abstained from attending the meeting. Then, the school’s head and the rest of the management distributed doughnuts to the staff, but apparently left out its UPE members. Props to UPE for fighting for what educators really need and deserve.  

What’s happening today?: It’s a Gozo day out! The Labour Party will be in Gozo today moving from one place to another, with a final activity happening in Nadur at 6:30pm. Meanwhile, the Nationalist Party will be in Xagħra for a discussion event at 6pm. Independent candidate Arnold Cassola is also in Gozo meeting residents and NGOs.

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