Tista’ taqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti hawn.
TEC, the events the company that handles logistics for Labour’s mass events, was issued with as many as 20 direct orders in just one day by Transport Malta in connection with the launch of Ian Borg’s ‘Malta Metro’ proposal, according to a new list of direct orders published in the government gazette.
The list of contracts awarded by Transport Malta last year, when it was still controlled by Ian Borg, shows that 20 different direct orders were issued on 8 November, 2021, ranging from a value of €7,000 to €46,000. The promotion included a tent at the entrance to Valletta in the weeks leading up to the general elections.
All marked as ‘Malta Metro’ – a general term used by TM to avoid giving specific details of what each direct order was about – the 20 direct orders had a total value of €424,000.
While the main event to launch the ‘Malta Metro’ proposal was held on 2 October 2021, all the direct orders were approved and issued a month later, indicating that Transport Malta and ministry officials had doled out these contracts to the company belonging to Charles Magro before they’d obtained the required approval.
The information published in the Government Gazette also jars with information Minister Ian Borg supplied to parliament.
On the same day that the 20 direct orders obtained the approval of the finance ministry (8 November 2021), Minister Borg, at the time responsible for Transport Malta, told parliament that the cost of the launch of the metro proposal had cost the government €77,000.
In a breakdown of the costs mentioned in parliament and obtained by The Shift, none of the 20 direct orders given to TEC were included.
Instead, another direct order awarded to TEC was mentioned, where taxpayers forked out €26,000 for the hiring of a tent.
It is not known yet what services were provided via the 20 different direct orders.
Other payments mentioned by the minister were €4,750 to iCreate Ltd (another company owned by Magro) for printing, €300 for PBS board director, TV presenter and Water Services spokesman Pablo Micallef for compering the launch event, €2,320 to Busy Bee for refreshments, €15,390 to PR agency Pure Concepts and €18,557 to iLab for picture frames.
According to the data available so far, the publicity around the proposal has already cost taxpayers over half a million euro.
Minister Ian Borg, who has a reputation for doling out multi-million euro contracts and direct orders, was removed from the lucrative infrastructure ministry after the recent general elections and was instead appointed foreign affairs minister – traditionally a low-budget ministry with no responsibility for capital projects.