Kordin tragedy: Serbian contractor was building factory on government property

Architect works for Infrastructure Malta

 

The silence from the authorities responsible for last Saturday’s building collapse, which led to 20-year-old JeanPaul Sofia losing his life while another five workers were hospitalised, may have to do with the fact that the incident occurred on government property.

The Shift is reliably informed that the five-storey brick building, which went down like a pack of cards as soon as it felt the weight of concrete being poured on its roof, was being built on government property managed by Indis Malta – the state agency responsible for industrial parks.

So far, the government has not made any statement on who was involved in this project, while Indis Malta did not disclose its involvement in the Kordin project.

Sources close to the industry told The Shift that the premises were being built following a concession given a few years ago by Indis Malta, formerly Malta Industrial Parks, to businessman Matthew Schembri to use as a timber factory and offices.

Research by The Shift shows that the building’s permit was hurriedly issued by the Planning Authority last June, two weeks after its validation, through a DNO (Development Notification Order), which is used to expedite the planning process.

The DNO issued by the PA last June.

The architect responsible for the application is Adriana Zammit, who acquired her warrant in 2012 and works full-time as an architect at Infrastructure Malta – the government agency responsible for road building.

All architects working for the government or its agencies can do private work.

Architect Zammit, from Żabbar, also worked as a case officer at the Planning Authority for years.

The same sources said the building was being constructed by a Serbian contractor known as Miromir Milosovic, who has been working in Malta for a few years.

He did not appear to be among those on site when the tragedy occurred.  It is also unclear whether all the workers he engaged, including a Bosnian and three Albanians, had valid work permits.

Architect Adriana Zammit

According to Malta’s building rules, which the government has been promising to reform for years, particularly every time a building collapses, there are no requirements for contractors to register their activity.

The Malta Developers Association has also been calling for a proper register for years.

“All a so-called contractor needs to do to start practising is engage a builder (licensed mason) who is expected to be on site during work,” the sources said.

Industry sources expressed dismay at the latest fatality and put the blame squarely on the government regulators.

“Apart from the apparent shoddy work on site which led to last Saturday’s disaster, the supposed reform which was to be introduced by Robert Abela resulted in more paperwork and costs but no enforcement,” one said.

“It is obvious that there is no will by the authorities to make sure the building industry is regulated, and the discrimination between serious and shoddy contractors will continue,” another experienced builder told The Shift.

So far, it is unclear whether the Site Technical Officer, required to be present to make sure that all health and safety and proper building practices are being followed, was on site during the project.

A magisterial inquiry is ongoing.

                           
                           
                               
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Mick
Mick
1 month ago

Oh well here we go another day another scandal, another death, another silence, which will be followed by strenuous denials of responsibility and ownership with absolutely no one getting hammered for this obscene murderous project. New foundations will be laid before this young man is buried and no one will give a shit.

viv
viv
1 month ago

The guilty silence means that tax-payer money is being converted into work – and by that I mean that this Monday morning government minds and activities are being focused on the one industry that actually functions with true will and vigour – the Propaganda Industry.
So, look forward to lies, official press releases, earnest expressions and promises that will end up somehow putting more money into the hands of party lackeys, potential voters, persons of trust and other assorted cowboys.

Eddy
Eddy
1 month ago

Building cheap = expensive disaster.

Pembroke
Pembroke
1 month ago

That would mean that the magistral enquiry would have to blame government. Not a great situation to be in for the family of the victims to find justice.

Censu l-Clairvoyant
Censu l-Clairvoyant
1 month ago

Quote “Sources said that while the former BCA CEO wanted to introduce various punitive measures to try to rein the industry in, particularly when it came to its many ‘cowboys’” https://theshiftnews.com/2022/11/14/ousted-construction-regulator-head-blasts-minister-for-forced-dismissal/

Annie
Annie
1 month ago

Why are building works even allowed without scaffolding? Visit Switzerland and they have the building surrounded by tarpaulin to keep the dust down and immovable scaffolding ensuring that safety is paramount for workers.
Visit Malta and take your chances on whether you survive in the industry.

Mark Debono
Mark Debono
1 month ago
Reply to  Annie

Other countries also have building inspectors that come at intervals to check everything is done by the book instead of the envelope and they also sign off on each phase but won’t happen here as the PA would miss out on their envelopes probably?

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
1 month ago

I will once more reiterate that the Minister in charge of the regulatory Authorities responsible from construction and other complementary aspects related to the industry, is not up to it and cannot be the driver for the so much desired change. He is simply not fit for purpose. It seems that permits have been issued to develop on public land, where the final outcome might reveal that there were no proper checks in terms of health and safety, and that the method statement was approved by the Building and Construction Agency, making it seem to be an accomplice in this disaster.

Carmelo Borg
Carmelo Borg
1 month ago

Dan min hu il KUNTRATUR MALTI. MILLI JIDHER TA GEWWA GHAX SKONT IL MEDIA tiga ha 25 CONTRACTS TAL GVERN ????.

Joseph
Joseph
1 month ago
Reply to  Carmelo Borg

Malta zghira in-nies mgharufha

Josephbriffa
Josephbriffa
1 month ago

You pay peanuts. You get monkeys. Full stop.

M.Galea
M.Galea
1 month ago

They are all in it together! Government property which means state property given to the private and the big heads hiding after these people s name just to share the cake!

MBassa
MBassa
1 month ago

Recently too many BCA inspectors were recruited = good job SZA + Wefi

(bil-poppaturi ma tagħmlu xejn sew)

makjavel
makjavel
1 month ago

Then you see cranes and concrete pumps and all the noise that comes with such a process next to Sliema Primary School , during school hours. Nobody comes out of the school to send them off and calling the police if they do not. Whoever issued the permit must be from behind the moon.

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