What happened on... January 20
10, 25 and 50 years ago
10 years ago - The Times
Friday, February 20, 2009
Four Maltese in ‘miracle’ North Sea rescue
Four Maltese oil workers are safe and sound after being rescued from the helicopter which ditched into the North Sea on Wednesday evening. Richard Gauci, Keith Spiteri, Adrian Gomes and Emmanuel Spiteri were with 14 other oil workers aboard who all survived the accident in what has been compared to the Hudson River “miracle”.
The Super Puma helicopter ditched as it approached an oil rig just before 7pm. Workers on board the installation saw it go down about 500 metres away and immediately raised the alarm. It is unclear what caused the accident but rescuers said the helicopter tail boom was missing. The oil platform in the Etap (Eastern Trough Area Project) field, a complex of reservoirs operated by BP, is situated some 200km north east of Aberdeen.
Tunisian migrants protest
Tens of Tunisian migrants organised a chaotic protest at Lyster Barracks in Ħal Far yesterday morning – putting pressure on the Tunisian authorities to sort out their deportation papers as soon as possible. The uproar began when some mattresses were set alight, causing the authorities to deploy a fire engine and send soldiers and policemen to the scene.
25 years ago - The sunday Times
Sunday, February 20, 1994
GRTU mulls U-turn on VAT
Members of the GRTU, Association of General Retailers and Traders, seem set to deliver a body blow to the government by withdrawing support for value added tax, which the government aims to introduce next year.
Employer organisations, including the GRTU, have all come out in favour of VAT, providing a counter to the General Workers’ Union’s still opposition to it. It seems the GRTU is reconsidering its position on VAT because the membership feels betrayed by the increases in business licence fees sprung on them in the new year.
GRTU president Carlo Cini said: “VAT imposes on all shopowners and other traders a tremendous burden with no gain whatsoever for the honest trader”.
The GRTU turning against the tax would mean the government having to face the combined opposition to it of the Labour Party, the largest workers’ organisation, the GWU, and the largest employers’ union, the GRTU.
Local council turnout rises
Considerably higher turnout of voters – 70 per cent – than last month was registered in the third round of local elections yesterday.
The turnout last month was 66 per cent, while in the first round of elections in November, the turnout was 62.6 per cent.
Half a century ago - Times of Malta
Thursday, February 20, 1969
Detective testifies in Maltese murder trial in Australia
Legal argument and defence submissions at Sydney’s Central Criminal Court took most of the time in the third day of the trial of three men charged in connexion with the murder of Joseph Borg on May 28 last year.
Paul Mifsud and Paul Attard (charged with murder) and Keith Keillor (charged with being accessory before the fact) all pleaded not guilty before Mr Justice R.L. Taylor and a jury of 12.
Detective Sergeant L. Bates told the court he had conducted a typewritten record of an interview with Keillor at Darlinghurst Police Station on July 18. Keillor said in the interview “there is no doubt in the wide, wide world that Paul Zammit and little Paul did the bombing”.
Keillor allegedly told Sgt Bates “they are the two fellows that asked me how to make the bomb and I showed them”.
More traffic lights on the way
RTC Neonglow Ltd have been awarded contracts to supply and carry out the installation of three large traffic lights control systems and one pedestrian crossing.
These are intended to be fixed at Paola Square, Paola, St Paul’s Square, Ħamrun, Valley Road, Birkirkara, and the pedestrian crossing to be erected near St Paul’s church, Birkirkara.