Sofia public inquiry: from Corradino collapse to an industry under national scrutiny

We look back at the events which led to a public inquiry into the death of Jean Paul Sofia

The public inquiry into the death of Jean Paul Sofia starts today, Thursday.

The saga has unfolded against a backdrop of reluctance from the Labour government to comply to calls for a comprehensive public inquiry into the collapse of a Corradino structure that claimed the live of 19-year-old worker Jean Paul Sofia.

Prime Minister Robert aAbela, initially advocating for a clear demarcation between a magisterial inquiry and a public inquiry, encountered fervent resistance from the victim's mother, Isabelle Bonnici.

Bonnici's unyielding campaign for justice gained momentum over time, garnering widespread national support and putting immense pressure on the government to reconsider its stance.

In an eventual U-turn, the PM yielded to calls for a public inquiry, succumbing to the demands of the family and NGOs in the aftermath of a Labour parliamentary vote against a motion by the Opposition for a public inquiry.

The public inquiry board will be led by Ombudsman Joseph Zammit McKeon, who will be supported by Auditor General Charles Deguara and court expert Mario Cassar.

Sofia was killed in a construction site accident last December, after a three-storey building he was working at collapsed during construction works. Five men - three Albanian, a Maltese and a Bosnian were rescued by members of the Civil Protection Department.

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