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Threats Or Free Will? Two Informants Explain Prisoner Petition Calling For Alex Dalli’s Return

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Two petitions – one for inmates, one for prison officials – are currently being shared throughout prison.

But depending on who you speak to, there are different agendas behind them.

“People are being told that if they don’t sign this petition, they’ll lose their jobs,” one source with knowledge of Kordin prison told Lovin Malta.

Prisoners are allowed to take on menial jobs in prison – such as doll-making or masonry – that allows them to make a minimal amount of money. However, they have allegedly been told they could lose these jobs if they didn’t sign, according to one person that spoke to Lovin Malta.

According to the source, the petition has been passed through Division 1, 2, 3, 4 and 18.

The petitions call for the return of suspended prison director Alex Dalli, who suspended himself last week after the 14th death in prison under his watch. Since then, at least 10 inmates began a hunger strike calling for his return.

“They created an empire in prison, with the government scared to speak to them, and they now do as they want,” the source continued. “The petitions are happening because Dalli’s clique is still running the prison, and they know that if Dalli isn’t running things, they’ll eventually suffer.”

Dalli has faced allegations of abuse and controlling the prison with an iron fist since he took over. He faced claims that he was able to build up a clique of supporters within prison, who were given special privileges if loyalty was shown.

Dalli has since been replaced with Red Cross head Robert Brincau.

However, another prison official who spoke to Lovin Malta on condition of anonymity said the “majority of prisoners signed it” and that “inmates want him back because Dalli is disciplined and everybody – including inmates – like it this way”.

Prior to Dalli’s tenure, Malta’s prison was wracked with drug abuse, with former prisoners describing the institution as a place that was full of boredom, with prisoners finding any option to help pass the time and stave off the crushing slow passing of time.

What do you make of the Malta’s prison situation?

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Johnathan is interested in the weird, wonderful, and sometimes dark realities late capitalist society forces upon us all. He also likes food and music. Follow him at @supreofficialmt on Instagram, and send him news, food and music stories at [email protected]

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