Finance Minister again attempts to hide KM Malta chairman’s contract

David Curmi was paid €21,500 a month at Air Malta.

 

Finance Minister Clyde Caruana is again attempting to hide the financial package he awarded the Executive Chairman of KM Malta Airlines, David Curmi, after he employed him despite his failure with Air Malta.

A Freedom Of Information (FOI) request filed by The Shift asking for David Curmi’s new contract at KM Malta Airlines was turned down twice by Clyde Caruana, who used the stock excuse that the information was “commercially sensitive”.

The finance minister, who was paying Curmi a record €21,500 a month at the now-defunct Air Malta, was asked to produce Curmi’s new remuneration package, particularly as a four-year wage freeze was imposed on all the other company employees, mostly transferred from Air Malta, as well as a reduction in what they used to earn at Air Malta.

The Shift has now asked the Commissioner for Data Protection to investigate the finance minister’s response.

Clyde Caruana’s second attempt

This is Caruana’s second attempt to hide what the government is paying David Curmi, who has no experience running an airline.

Last year, after repeatedly refusing to state Curmi’s remuneration at Air Malta, turning down FOI requests and parliamentary questions for 18 months, The Shift revealed that Curmi was being paid €21,500 a month or almost €775,000 over three years. During this time, the national carrier was declared bankrupt.

Later, The Shift also revealed that Caruana had misled parliament when he declared that Curmi was not receiving any other remuneration after it was revealed that he was collecting his €10,000-a-year honoraria as a board director.

Finance Minister Clyde Caruana’s letter to the Speaker admitting to having given false information.

Caruana was forced to apologise to parliament for his ‘oversight’ and said that he was misled by the information he obtained from Curmi.

Instead of acting against Curmi, mostly for failing to deliver on the most important task he was given in 2020 – the financial turnaround of Air Malta – Caruana still tasked the same chairman with leading the new state-sponsored Maltese airline.

During its first months, KM Malta Airlines has already been struggling financially, and many in the industry do not envisage a bright future for the new venture.

The airline was also recently hit by a scandal, revealed by The Shift. One of its pilots, Danica Theuma, was caught flying for another airline – Virgin Atlantic – while on the books of KM Malta, possibly in breach of contract and international safety rules.

While Virgin Atlantic immediately fired Theuma as soon as it got wind of what was happening, KM Malta Airlines still allowed Theuma to operate its flights.

Despite various reminders, David Curmi did not reply to The Shift’s questions asking for an explanation.

                           

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A. Fan
A. Fan
24 days ago

Yet another reason to choose any other carrier; as if we needed any.

This government vanity project (PN/PL alike) has been costing Maltese taxpayers way too much (most of whom will never board a KM flight). All that’s really needed is a reliable shuttle service to a couple of European airline hubs, which can be contracted from one or two of the many wet leasing carriers operating all over the EU.

Or should everyone still keep subsidising the convenience of the few, especially when alternative connections abound? Much wealthier nations have yielded to the inevitable over the years, and their citizenry can still fly to their destinations at reasonable times and prices (without the wasted taxpayer subsidies to a ‘national carrier’ in a perpetual nosedive).

S. Camilleri
S. Camilleri
23 days ago

“Finance Minister Clyde Caruana is again attempting to hide the financial package he awarded the Executive Chairman of KM Malta Airlines, David Curmi, after he employed him despite his failure with Air Malta.” Meritocracy. The Finance Ministry has become some sort of secretive society protecting its members.

Carmelo borg
23 days ago

Kollox bil mohbi .Omerta shieha TOTO RINA STYLE.
LI NAF LI DAVID CURMI SPECJALIZAT FL INSURANCE.
META TAHBI IZJED TOHLOQ THASSIB CLYDE.

Noel Ciantar
Noel Ciantar
23 days ago

Based on the Finance Minister’s fear to disclose the contract, I am morally convinced that once The Shift’s FOI reqiest is upheld, because upheld it will be, then we will find out that Curmi did neither get a paycut nor a payfreeze.

Clyde Caruana should be referred to as the Minister of Hiding.

He not only hides public interest financial information, like the remuneration of David Curmi. He also went himself into political hiding during the electoral campaign, in which government tried to bribe voters by issuing 270,000 – more than a quarter of million – cheques to households.

Last edited 23 days ago by Noel Ciantar
Mike Gatt
Mike Gatt
22 days ago

The Government is not a commercial entity, and therefore cannot ever have anything which is commercially sensitive. The government is the people and the people have every right to know how much they are paying this Fakir Crook.

Last edited 22 days ago by Mike Gatt
wenzu
wenzu
22 days ago

David Curmi, who has no experience running an airline—- with the MLP that’s ALL the qualifications one needs.

Pony Express
Pony Express
21 days ago

There is more than robbing Peter to pay Paul. Good luck KM whatever.

Robert pace bonello is
Robert pace bonello is
21 days ago

Paying a CEO who bankrupted AM to take down KM. Prosit Clyde

Joseph Said
Joseph Said
21 days ago

Employing incompetent personnel with an exorbitant financial package should be answerable, by whoever is responsible, to the taxpayer’s money. Our government is not a commercial entity and is bound to supply information about its expenditure. Arrogance at its best!!

Gerald Goodwin
Gerald Goodwin
18 days ago

Time KM went , along with the PL .A lot of people are paying hard earned tax ,why should the few benefit over the majority

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