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“Off-Road & Camping Off Limits, But Drugs Are Ok”

“Off-Road & Camping Off Limits, But Drugs Are Ok”
Jan 21 2024 Share

Taking to social media, Neville Ciantar, a Maltese off-road professional driver, lamented the apparent hypocrisy he has experienced as of late.

He started his post saying how going off-roading led to fines and the confiscation of his vehicle. He also experienced the same reactions by authorities when it came to tinted windows on vehicles, going camping and practicing hunting by the rules.

He contrasted this with the use of drugs which, for Ciantar, seems to be getting a pass. 

‘You can carry 500 pills of ecstasy or a quarter of a kilo of cocaine. You can smoke whatever amount of marijuana you want anywhere you want. But no worries…’

‘Is this right’, asked Ciantar. He suspects that this hypocrisy is in place due to those enforcing such rules must love the drugs themselves. 

‘They surely don’t want anything good for our youth’, he concluded.

The post was met with overall support, with over 150 likes and 44 comments expressing similar sentiments. 

What do you make of this?

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Students Create Coasters To Help Turtle In Rehabilitation

Students Create Coasters To Help Turtle In Rehabilitation
Jan 21 2024 Share

The Ekoskola Team from Kulleġġ San Tumas More, in collaboration with Arts teacher Mark Lughermo and Ms Carmen Bonnici LSE are presently working to create turtle coasters using clay.

‘These coasters in the shape of a turtle’, a statement revealed, will be sold later on at school to raise the necessary funds to continue supporting Polly Censa.’

Polly is a loggerhead marine turtle which is presently receiving care at Xrobb l-Għaġin Wildlife Rescue Centre. 

The turtle was officially adopted by the school last December and funds raised to help her get back into the sea. 

Well done all!

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New Health Minister Outlines Mater Dei Overcrowding As Top Priority

Jan 20 2024 Share

In response to a question from MaltaDaily about his primary focus for the health sector in Malta, newly appointed Health Minister Jo Etienne Abela highlighted the urgency of addressing the persistent issue of overcrowding in the Mater Dei Hospital’s emergency department. Abela expressed a commitment to reducing the influx of patients and decreasing waiting times for those genuinely in need of emergency care.

Addressing the challenge head-on, Abela emphasised that tackling overcrowding is paramount to enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency services. He acknowledged that finding a solution requires a comprehensive approach, involving collaboration with healthcare professionals and implementing necessary changes based on their valuable insights.

Abela stressed that there is no quick fix or magic solution to the overcrowding problem. Instead, he underscored the importance of listening to the voices of healthcare workers, acknowledging their expertise, and incorporating their recommendations into the decision-making process. By actively involving the frontline workers, the government aims to implement swift and effective changes to alleviate the strain on the emergency department.

Overcrowding in the emergency department has been a persistent issue, affecting both the quality and timeliness of care. Minister Abela’s acknowledgment of this challenge as his top priority signals a commitment to addressing the immediate needs of patients and healthcare professionals alike.

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Malta’s Drug Reform Debate: Clash of Perspectives and Public Consultation

Jan 20 2024 Share

Malta finds itself at the centre of a heated debate over proposed drug reforms, as Prime Minister Robert Abela defends the government’s efforts to modernise drug laws. Meanwhile, the Nationalist Party voices strong opposition, highlighting concerns that the reforms may be granting leniency to drug traffickers.

Justice Minister Jonathan Attard initiated a public consultation process, deeming the proposed reforms a “courageous step toward a fairer society.” The draft law, shaped through collaboration with stakeholders such as the judiciary, probation and parole boards, and healthcare institutions, seeks to strengthen existing legislation with a focus on human considerations and efficiency.

Among the primary proposals are an increase in the composition of the Drug Offenders Rehabilitation Board, clearer criteria for converting a court into a drugs court, and the introduction of non-jury trials for serious drug offences. The reform also contemplates allowing prison inmates caught with drugs, while serving time, to qualify for rehabilitation rather than automatic re-imprisonment.

However, the Nationalist Party strongly opposes the proposed changes, asserting that the government is categorising those caught with significant amounts of drugs as victims rather than traffickers. The party argues that the suggested limits—such as 500 ecstasy pills, 200 grams of heroin or cocaine, and 500 grams of cannabis—may inadvertently favour traffickers over victims.

Prime Minister Abela defends the reform, emphasising that it aims to provide the courts with more options to handle cases appropriately. Abela criticises what he perceives as a misinformation campaign by the Nationalist Party, asserting that the penalty for drug trafficking remains life in prison, and a white paper has been published to engage the public in constructive discussions.

The government contends that the reform offers flexibility to the courts, allowing them to consider circumstances such as rehabilitation when adjudicating cases involving possession of certain drugs. Abela acknowledges ongoing discussions with Caritas, an organisation deeply involved in assisting drug addiction victims, to ensure the reforms align with societal expectations.

Photo Source: MART PRODUCTION

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