Tista’ taqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti
Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne has put his new personal adviser, a 28-year-old lawyer, on a €65,000 financial package, despite her lack of experience in government administration, according to information obtained through a Freedom of Information request.
After hitting the headlines for an “irregular” €163,000 a year contract he gave to his close campaign manager and friend, Carmen Ciantar, as CEO of the Foundation for Medical Services, Fearne has now turned to Paula Cauchi, a former Labour TV reporter as his chief adviser and political strategist.
Cauchi, who has just returned to Malta from a week in New York assisting her minister in UN meetings, is being paid more than the minister himself.
Despite graduating from the University of Malta only a few years ago, Cauchi is already receiving a basic salary normally associated with government ambassadors, apart from a raft of perks and allowances, boosting her salary to almost €5,500 a month.
Information sought through a Freedom of Information request shows how Cauchi has made annual strides forward in her publicly-funded remuneration since she started associating herself with Minister Fearne.
After a short stint working as a spokesperson for Helena Dalli, later appointed European Commissioner, Cauchi, the daughter of former Labour MP Gino Cauchi, immediately joined Fearne’s bandwagon.
Through a part-time contract signed by Carmen Ciantar, who she has now replaced at the ministry, the former ONE reporter was recruited as a Contractual Manager at the Foundation for Medical Services in 2018.
At first, Cauchi only worked 25 hours a week for a financial package of almost €32,000.
However, she was given two significant payment boosts in 2019 and 2020, reaching a package of almost €40,000 by the end of 2019.
Together with Carmen Ciantar, at the time Fearne’s chief confidante, Cauchi was given an important role in Fearne’s personal bid to take over the leadership of the Labour Party soon after disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat was forced to resign.
However, the Ciantar-Cauchi duo failed to achieve the desired result as Abela, at the time the underdog in the race, ended up beating Fearne.
Government sources told The Shift that soon after the failed election, Fearne asked for Cauchi to start working at his office at the ministry as his main adviser.
Through her new contract, Cauchi was put on a government salary Scale 3 and given an added €16,000 a year ‘expertise allowance’.
With all her perks and bonuses, including allowances for communications, transport, and others, Cauchi is paid almost €65,000.
Meanwhile, it is unclear whether Fearne has renegotiated the €163,000 contract he gave to Ciantar at the FMS as promised before the general elections in March.
Both Prime Minister Robert Abela and Fearne had admitted that Ciantar’s public contract, revealed by The Shift, would be revised when it expired.
As a person of trust, Ciantar’s contract should have ended at the last general elections and, according to protocol, a new contract should have been drawn up.
FMS sources told The Shift that Fearne is so far refusing to abide by the direction given to him by the prime minister.
Questions sent to the OPM on the subject were not answered.
The Shift also revealed that Fearne also put Carmen Ciantar’s 26-year-old daughter, Celine, on a government board at his ministry.
Pigs at the trough….of all shapes, sizes and ages… but still pigs!
All cabinet ministers, including Chris Fearne are generous with taxpayers’ money in giving handouts to their close inner circle. It is a form of corruption and Fearne doesn’t stand away.
Ah, Fearne, the good guy in disguise. Pigs rule the country!
Ministru Caruana umbad trid lil popolin jiehdok bis serjeta . U HALLINA . B INIES .GAHAN tithaq imma min ghandu naqra melh mohhu le. Hawn ghajdut li Fearne sejjer l ewropa jekk u veru j Alla jitlaq illum qabel ghada.
SHAME ISTHI JEKK TAF
I simply see these as PARASITES now.
Gwapp iehor. Flus il-haddiem ONES moghtija lil tal-qalba fil-MMUVENT KORROTT.
No doubt, they’re all corrupt to the bone
Kollha mill-istess pezza.
Never had so much money been given to so few….
How many tax payers will foot the bill of this red eyed appointee to the national cash dispensing minister.
Let the greedy be greedy one day they choke on it.
Early Christmas presents on a daily basis.
Air Malta another 50million euros in golden handshakes or take home pay 50k + per month until retirement age!
Who is accountable for spending tax payers money . Minister of finance / opm writing open cheques.
Make every vote count
One of these days , we will not be allowed to take out OUR Savings, because OUR savings may have become Collateral for the €10,000 MILLION the government has borrowed to keep paying his friends and his political appointees. Look at Lebanon. It is happening.
u ahna nisikaw ic cunturin
€16,000 yearly just for her expertise. Can the minister give us details of her expertise and her experience/qualifications, since her graduating as a lawyer?
Having been a ONE PL reporter, I question how ONE employees seem to have a free pass to graduating as lawyers.
One is the Apprenticeship Scheme for the Labour Government . All of them go through the ONE system. This provides the grooming to its trainees. It guarantees blind loyalty . It is the “Brigata Laburista” for the elite of the party.
REJOICE IĠNĦA FOR VOTING FOR A PL GOVERNMENT
THAT HAS NO SHAME WASTING MILLIONS OF EUROS
IN TAXPAYERS’ MONEY.
She earns more than he does!!
Flus ghal dan il hmieg ghandkom.
Flus biex thallsu lill haddiema mal Gvern m’ghandhomx ja DEMEL.
Clyde Caruana ghandek biex tiftahar!
What does the finance minister have to say about this waste of money?