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Moonlighting MCAST Principal paid two authorities salaries, taking dwelling €117k a yr


Sep 1, 2022

The Principal of MCAST, James Calleja, was given a second state-funded place – and being paid two separate salaries – boosting his annual earnings from taxpayer funds to virtually 120,000 a yr, greater than twice the sum that’s formally paid to his Minister Justyne Caruana, The Shift has discovered.

Other than his profitable five-year contract as principal of the Malta Faculty of Arts, Science & Expertise (MCAST), which additionally give him beneficiant allowances that additionally develop his monetary package deal, The Shift has found that Calleja was additionally granted a separate 40,000 a yr ‘contract of service’ to behave as a guide to the identical schooling ministry that employs him at MCAST.

Calleja refused to reply questions on his second paid place or to clarify how he finds the time to fulfil the additional 25 hours per week obligation on his ‘consultancy’ on the ministry.

Neither did he clarify whether or not he obtained the mandatory permission to do a part-time job, which based on schooling ministry sources is “very conflicting along with his place as principal at MCAST”.

In response to guidelines adopted by MCAST, all members of workers on the tertiary schooling establishment have to get permission in writing from the principal (James Calleja) to do any kind of labor outdoors workplace hours.

It’s not identified whether or not Calleja has been given the MCAST board’s permission, or that of the politically appointed Board Chairman Ian Refalo, to do that further work. 

€77,000 as MCAST Principal not beneficiant sufficient

A former Head of Secretariat to then-PN Parliamentary Secretary George Hyzler who was later promoted to a everlasting secretary, Calleja was one in all solely three everlasting secretaries left of their submit after Labour was returned to energy in 2013.

He was then chosen by then-Schooling Minister Evarist Bartolo to exchange former MCAST Principal, Stephen Cachia, after the latter’s contract was not renewed.

Whereas Calleja was initially given a three-year contract by then faculty President, Silvio Debono – additionally a political appointee who was working his personal schooling establishment similtaneously heading MCAST– Calleja was awarded his second contract, this time a five-year deal, earlier this yr on the directions of Justyne Caruana.

Other than an annual wage of 47,000 a yr, Calleja’s new contract is peppered with annual ‘allowances’ clearly meant to inflate his remuneration, all of which is paid by taxpayers.

These embrace a communication allowance – 2,000; duty allowance – 7,000; expense allowance – 8,000; journey allowance – 4,658; efficiency allowance – 7,000 and a qualification allowance – 1,100 – pushing his package deal as much as 77,000 a yr.

Calleja seems to have negotiated a a lot better contract than his predecessor Stephen Cachia, who was paid lower than 60,000 a yr for a similar function.

The Shift has now additionally found that aside from his hefty monetary package deal, which in comparison with different public sector grades is very beneficiant, Calleja was additionally given a separate ‘consultancy’ contract by the schooling minister, for which he was paid an extra 40,000 a yr.

In response to his consultancy contract, Calleja is certain to work an additional 25 hours per week to supply recommendation on the ‘nationwide abilities technique for the labour market’ – which is stunning given this could clearly already be coated by his function at MCAST – the island’s establishment for vocational coaching.

Calleja has failed to answer queries about when he’s offering this consultancy, what time is he attending the schooling ministry, the place his workplace is and whether or not this consultancy continues to be ongoing.

His final one yr contract expired earlier this yr and it’s not but identified whether or not it was renewed.

Calleja refused to present any particulars.

His solely reply to The Shift’s questions was: “I fully (evidence-based) fulfil my job as Principal/CEO. The belief reposed in me by successive ministers is ample affirmation of this.”

Beleaguered establishment

Solely final week The Shift revealed {that a} police investigation has been ongoing for the previous two years on a damning inquiry report which advisable legal motion towards high MCAST officers for perjury and falsification of interview examination outcomes with a purpose to assist politically advisable lecturers get sure posts.

The report additionally states that this ‘suggestions system’ was additionally used for higher-ranking posts, together with the recruitment of the principal.

Additionally, MCAST is being accused by one in all its most skilled senior lecturers, Peter Gatt, of a marketing campaign of ‘victimisation’.

In response to Gatt, the orchestrated marketing campaign towards him began quickly after he reported about an alleged net of abuse amongst lecturers and within the faculty’s administration. The senior lecturer was taken off lecturing duties, declared  persona non grata and ultimately transferred to a secondary faculty. 

The court docket blocked this switch, whereas the Ombudsman described MCAST’s response as “an oppressive act tantamount to degrading remedy”.

Only a day after the court docket ordered MCAST to cease the switch, Principal Calleja wrote to Gatt informing him that he wouldn’t be receiving his wage any longer as he was now not thought of to be an MCAST workers member.

Courtroom proceedings instituted by Gatt towards MCAST are ongoing.

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