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ITU beds for COVID patients cost €1,500 per night states Fearne

 - COVID-19 - May 24 SHARE ON:
ITU beds for COVID patients cost €1,500 per night states Fearne

Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Chris Fearne revealed that every bed in the Intensive Care Unit (ITU) cost between €1,325 to €1,500 per night when patients have complications due to COVID-19. 

Fearne was answering a parliamentary question tabled by parliamentary deputy Robert Cutajar. Fearne went on to explain that the costs varied from patient to patient. 

He also revealed that the number of patients which had to end up in the ITU because of COVID racked up to 352 throughout the pandemic. 

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Race for PN leadership kicks off with early votes submitted

 - Local - May 24 SHARE ON:
Race for PN leadership kicks off with early votes submitted

Nationalist Party council members who would not be in Malta on the day for a vote of confidence for PN leader Bernard Grech cast their vote on Monday evening between 5 and 9pm. 

With the early voting held at Dar Centrali in tal-Pieta and the party’s sub-headquarters in Ta’ Sannat, Gozo, around 1,500 council members are eligible to vote in this election.

The official election will be held on Friday and Saturday, with Bernard Grech being the sole candidate in this race. Grech has said that he has unfinished business, urging councillors to give him a strong mandate to help him make the PN a people’s party. 

He threw in his name in the hat because, according to him, the job he started in 2020 is still incomplete. Grech said that the party still enjoyed the fruit of their own efforts despite the electoral loss in March. 

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€500,000 assistance scheme for organisations promoting traditions related to Maltese festa

 - Local - May 24 SHARE ON:

The Minister for the National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government Owen Bonnici, has announced a special one-time financial assistance scheme of €500,000 aimed at supporting local band clubs and related voluntary organisations in the organisation of the Maltese Festa during 2022. This scheme is open to band clubs, voluntary fireworks factories and Maltese feast decoration associations which have actively participated or will actively participate in a Maltese Festa in this current year.

“As a Government, we believe that this scheme is an important part of the support being given to organisations promoting local traditions related to the Maltese Festa since it will bolster their ability to continue doing their relentless work, even after the hardship endured due to the COVID-19 pandemic during the past months”, said Minister Bonnici.

This scheme aims to build on the momentum generated from last year’s RESTART schemes which were a catalyst in the regeneration of the creative and cultural sectors following the disruptions brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Band clubs, voluntary fireworks factories and Maltese feast decoration associations can receive a total of EUR 6,000 per cluster between them (EUR 2,000 per strand). If an entity has a dual or triple function, then it is entitled to EUR 4,000 or EUR 6,000, respectively.

“Through this scheme, we are recognising the hardships endured by various voluntary organisations due to the COVID-19 pandemic whilst ensuring that current and future commitments by these organisations can be taken more sustainably and responsibly”, said Arts Council Director Mary Ann Cauchi.

Arts Council Malta fully recognises the importance of safeguarding and promoting local traditions as part of our national identity. Moreover, this support will continue to enhance the recognition of the Maltese Festa both locally and abroad as part of its Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Official guidelines and applications will be available online from Friday 27th May 2022. For more information, kindly contact Arts Council Malta on 2334 7230, weekdays between 09:00 and 16:00, or send an email to [email protected] or visit artscouncil.mt.

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Russia is weaponising the global food supply with Black Sea blockade

 - Food - May 24 SHARE ON:
Russia is weaponising the global food supply with Black Sea blockade

Russia has started to use food supplies as a weapon to cause global repercussions, claimed European Commission president Ursula Von der Leyen. 

Leyen said that global cooperation is the only antidote to Russia’s blackmail as she spoke at the annual World Economic Forum held in Davos. 

She said that in Russian-occupied Ukraine, ‘the Kremlin’s army is confiscating grain stocks and machinery. And Russian warships in the Black Sea are blockading Ukrainian ships full of wheat and sunflower seeds.’

The invasion had already sent the price of grain, cooking oil, energy, fertilisers and other goods soaring. The Kremlin pointed fingers at the West, saying that they are responsible for the global food crisis for introducing sanctions. 

This comes as the EU and other countries such as the US impose sanctions on Moscow. Meanwhile, Finland and Sweden will be sending teams to Turkey to discuss their NATO bids due to Ankara opposing the appeal to join. 

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