🇬🇧 Valletta, 22nd February, 2024
We, as long-term migrants living and working in Malta, are uniting to demand stability, not uncertainty, in our lives. In light of recent events and ongoing struggles faced by the migrant community, we are asserting our rights and calling for urgent action from authorities. We arrived in Malta years ago, leaving behind critical situations in our countries of origin, and now call Malta home. Although we were neither given protection nor a residence card, we were given the right to work legitimately and in turn to pay tax and national insurance for decades.
The Commission on Human Rights first appointed a Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers in 1994 due to the increasing frequency of attacks on the independence of judges, lawyers and court officials and the link which exists between the weakening of safeguards for the judiciary and lawyers and the gravity and frequency of violations of human rights.
The Strengthening Access to Justice for Improved Human Rights Protection project has as its objective the improving of access to justice for individuals wishing to strengthen their human rights protection in those instances when they feel that they have been violated. Whilst Malta has a relatively strong human rights regime that seeks to protect a long list of fundamental human rights, the practical protection offered to persons whose rights have been violated or might be violated is rather weak.
Today, 12th July 2023, Parliament will be voting on the motion to initiate a public inquiry into Jean Paul Sofia’s death, after he was killed in a building collapse in Kordin. Civil society organisations will be supporting Jean Paul Sofia’s family from the public gallery in Parliament.
Regardless of the outcome of the criminal investigations and the magisterial inquiry, without a public inquiry that questions the circumstances of Jean Paul’s death, more people will be killed or injured on construction sites. These deaths and injuries can be prevented if the Maltese State learns lessons from Jean Paul’s death. The questions that must be asked include whether Jean Paul Sofia’s death could have been prevented; whether there were and are systemic and administrative failures that are contributing to fatalities and injuries on construction sites; and how action can be taken to prevent such fatalities and injuries.
The European Commission 2021 Rule of Law Report Country Chapter on the Rule of Law Situation in Malta
According to the 2021 Rule of Law Report Country Chapter on the Rule of Law Situation in Malta, Malta has made significant progress within the domestic justice system particularly with regard to the reform of judicial appointments and judicial discipline, and also the appointment of the Chief Justice, in fact the level or perceived independence has increased and this in view of enhancing judicial independence and subsequently facilitating access to justice. The main legislative changes that addressed these issues were highlighted in another post Venice Commission: regrets that 6 Bills adopted before opinion could be finalised, before it could engage with the national stakeholders.