Manoel Theatre also defies OPM directive and throws Christmas party

The authority of the new head of the public service, Tony Sultana, is being challenged as the management of the Manoel Theatre today throws a party for its staff and guests.

Following last week’s staff party at the Building and Construction Agency (BCA) – thrown with complete disregard to a directive against any such parties Sultana issued in November, the Manoel Theatre will today host its Christmas bash.

Making matters worse, those invited include the permanent secretary at the National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government Ministry Joyce Dimech and the Head of Secretariat, who is supposed to be the ministry’s watchdog ensuring directives such as that issued by the Office of the Prime Minister are strictly adhered to.

According to a directive issued by Principal Permanent Secretary Tony Sultana last month, government departments and agencies are strictly forbidden from using public funds for Christmas parties.

The circular issued by the Office of the Prime Minister.

The directive was, however, ignored by the BCA last week, and even though Sultana confirmed the BCA had not been given an exemption, he still failed to stop the party.

A repeat occurrence is now happening at the Manoel Theatre.

The Shift is informed that preparations were in full swing yesterday at the national theatre, with a large consignment of alcohol delivered to the theatre by a renowned Hamrun stockist while theatre employees were busy preparing the studio for the party.

Questions sent to Sultana yesterday remained unanswered. On the other hand, Minister Owen Bonnici and his Permanent Secretary Joyce Dimech, who were informed about the unauthorised party, also refused to reply to questions.

Both the Manoel Theatre and Minister Bonnici are currently in hot water over a series of blunders, including the signing of irregular contracts by the theatre’s chairman.

Sultana, who replaced Mario Cutajar at the helm of the public service last summer, has already had his wings clipped by the prime minister, who has afforded him much less authority than his predecessor.

The prime minister had broken with tradition and, instead of appointing the head of the civil service as Cabinet Secretary, as has been the case for two decades, Sultana is not allowed to participate in Cabinet meetings, unlike his predecessors.

The dual role has been split, and Robert Abela appointed his young canvasser, Ryan Spagnol, to the role.

Before taking over as head of the civil service, Sultana was the chairman of the Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA).

                           
                           
                               
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Joseph Tabone Adami
Joseph Tabone Adami
1 month ago

“Menefregismu” at its worst. Nigi naqa’ u nqum. Nigi nit……

Tindahallix x’naghmel bi flus il-poplu!

.

Bamboccu
Bamboccu
1 month ago

Il Ministri jaghmlu festini minn fuq dahar il poplu?

Joey Falzon
Joey Falzon
1 month ago

why not check the Christmas bash ARMS ltd had at their Pieta offices at Gattard House last week, with caterer Primavera doing the job!!!!

Was it self-financed? Was it public money or maybe the missing refunds being used otherwise????

Last edited 1 month ago by Joey Falzon
makjavel
makjavel
1 month ago

Feed back from the direct orders.
So for all intents and purposes the government is not paying for the party.
And Abela knows. He is not stupid.

John Demarco
John Demarco
1 month ago

I actually agree that a christmas party for all employees is held. I honestly believe that these directives which came into affect during L. Gonzi’s term were very unfair, as in those times, only parties for low grade employees were stopped. Top management still held parties in CEOs offices.

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
1 month ago
Reply to  John Demarco

The funny thing is that the Head of the civil service circulated a notification to all Ministries in order to refrain from using public funds when holding parties.

Rachel Grech
Rachel Grech
1 month ago
Reply to  John Demarco

Fun fact – the police Xmas party is funded by the members of the police force themselves ,no public funds .each section arranges a party or dinner at each member’s own expense.

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
1 month ago

Labour defies every rule to turn things to his favor and deceives the weak all the time, to try maintaining credibility.

Philip Micallef
Philip Micallef
1 month ago

Public funds should not be used for employee parties. Instead, as is done in some jurisdictions the employees themselves pay for the party and some charitable cause.

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