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MCAST defies courtroom order to cease ‘vindictive’ actions towards senior lecturer who unveiled wrongdoing

ByEditorialTeam

Sep 2, 2022

MCAST Principal James Calleja has ignored a courtroom order to cease its “abusive” therapy of senior lecturer Dr. Peter Gatt, and defied the courtroom’s instruction to reinstate him, The Shift has realized.

A day after the courtroom ordered the Malta Faculty for Arts, Science and Know-how (MCAST) to cease its “vindictive” disciplinary procedures towards Gatt, one in every of its most senior lecturers, Calleja wrote to Gatt informing him that he was not an MCAST employees member and that he might be disadvantaged of his wage.

Within the letter, seen by The Shift, dated June 22, MCAST’s head informed Gatt that he was barred from coming into the MCAST campus – the place he’s a senior lecturer – as he was not thought-about to be a member of the employees.

Letter despatched to MCAST senior lecturer Peter Gatt by Principal James Calleja, dated a day after the courtroom ordered the school to cease its ‘vindictive’ therapy of Gatt

Calleja additionally knowledgeable the skilled lecturer that his wage would not be paid, this depriving him of his earnings.

Calleja’s letter was dated only a day after the courtroom ordered MCAST to cease its plans to demote the lecturer, describing the school’s actions as irregular and “vindictive”.

In one other measure ordered by Calleja – a former private assistant of a PN Parliamentary Secretary– a discover displaying an image of Gatt was affixed to the primary entrance of the school, asking all safety guards to bar Gatt from the premises.

This memo was displayed in full view of the opposite lecturers, colleagues of Dr Gatt, and college students coming into the campus.

Memo barring Peter Gatt’s entry onto the MCAST  campus

Calleja refused to answer to questions on why he has endured in taking motion towards Gatt, regardless of the courtroom’s unequivocal orders to desist.

The Shift additionally requested Calleja if he was going to take duty for the attainable contempt of courtroom procedures which his actions clearly breach.

Once more, Calleja didn’t reply.

As a substitute, the school’s director of communications mentioned “the courtroom case is presently ongoing, and knowledge might be communicated as soon as it’s concluded.”

The Shift is knowledgeable that Calleja’s choices are being backed by MCAST’s board of governors, headed by constitutional professional and authorities appointee, Ian Refalo.

What the courtroom ordered MCAST to do

After greater than a yr of feeling persecuted by the MCAST administration for revealing wrongdoing and varied ‘rackets’ on the faculty, Gatt, a senior lecturer on the faculty, filed a warrant of prohibitory injunction to cease his switch to a secondary faculty.

On June 21, the Court docket upheld Gatt’s claims, stating that MCAST’s actions had been abusive, vindictive and in breach of his rights. The courtroom noticed that even the best way the school knowledgeable Gatt about his termination was hasty and “clearly supposed to prejudicing (his) rights”.

The Court docket ordered that Gatt’s termination order be revoked and that he continues to be thought-about as an MCAST member of employees.

Regardless of this courtroom order, MCAST continues to be not contemplating Gatt as its lecturer and isn’t paying him his wage.

Gatt has now opened a courtroom case towards the instructing establishment.

Persecution for outing rackets at MCAST

Gatt, a fully-qualified geologist, was beforehand employed on the Schooling Ministry. In 2014 he was detailed as a senior lecturer at MCAST.

A couple of years later, he started noticing a collection of irregularities within the workings of the establishment and knowledgeable the authorities and MCAST’s administration of what he’d found.

His experiences of abuses on the faculty, included questionable conduct of each the administration and lecturers, particularly these associated to the preparation of syllabi of programs. Gatt he thought-about these to be beneath the required ranges and of very poor high quality.

He knowledgeable MCAST and the Schooling Ministry that people with none {qualifications} had been being commissioned and paid via taxpayers’ funds to put in writing syllabi for MCAST programs, and that these had been of very poor high quality.

A number of of those syllabi needed to be re-written at the same time as lecturers had been demanding that this work ought to be finished by themselves, as they had been really instructing these programs.

Gatt additionally outed what he dubbed ‘MCAST rackets,’ by which lecturers had been allegedly abusing allowances associated to extra instructing schemes and analysis hours.

Though these alleged abuses had been reported to the Schooling Ministry and to the MCAST principal, no investigations had been carried out.

As a substitute, MCAST ordered disciplinary motion towards Gatt over “unethical behaviour” whereas beginning to ostracise him by not giving him any lecturing duties and ordering him to not talk together with his college students.

Following the listening to associated to the disciplinary motion, no wrongdoing was discovered on Dr Gatt’s half.

Nonetheless, only a few weeks later, MCAST requested for Gatt’s detailing to be revoked.

This was accepted by Prime Minister Robert Abela final June after which Gatt was pressured to go to courtroom to guard his rights.

A grievance by Gatt was additionally upheld by the Ombudsman for Schooling, former Chief Justice Vincent De Gaetano, who on Might 21 described MCAST’s actions as “an oppressive act tantamount to degrading therapy.”

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