Mr Dom Mintoff (1955 – 1958, 1971 - 1984)

Prime Minister of Malta (1955 – 1958, 1971 - 1984)



Mr Dom Mintoff, B.Sc, B.E. & A., M.A. (Oxon), A. & C.E., M.P., son of Lawrence and late Concetta nee Farrugia, was born in Cospicua on August 6, 1916.
 
He attended the Government Elementary School and the Seminary, from which he proceeded to the Lyceum and the University of Malta. In 1937 he graduated in B.Sc and two years later, in 1939, B.E. & A. & C.E. Mr Mintoff was awarded a Government travelling Scholarship and Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford in 1939 where he obtained his M.A. in Engineering Science.
 
During the years 1941 - 43, Mr Mintoff worked as Civil Engineer in UK, and as architect in Malta from 1943 onwards. During 1936 - 37 he was General Secretary of the Malta Labour Party. In 1945, he was elected member of the Council of Government and Executive Council. Mr Mintoff formed part of labour delegations to UK in 1945, 1947, 1948 and 1949. He was elected in the General Elections in the interests of the Malta Labour Party in 1947 and was Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Works and Reconstruction during 1947-49. He resigned in 1949.
 
Mr Mintoff has been leader of the Malta Labour Party since 1949. He was Prime Minister during the period 1955-58. He resigned office in 1958 to lead the Maltese Liberation Movement. Mr Mintoff was again elected in the General Elections in 1962 and 1966. He served as Leader of the Opposition during 1962-71.
Mr Mintoff became Prime Minister for a second term in June 1971 and yet again following the General Elections in September, 1976 and in December, 1981. In September 1983, he was assigned also the office of Minister of the Interior.
 
Mr Mintoff's primary aim has always been that of securing peace and stability in Europe and the Mediterranean. To this end, on assuming office in 1971, Mr Mintoff immediately asked for negotiations with the British Government for the military base in Malta to be dismantled. Final agreement was reached following hard negotiations between September 1971 and March 1972 on a 7-year defence base agreement with Britain and NATO on condition that this is in no way used against Arab states.
 
Mr Mintoff negotiated a treaty of friendship and close economic cooperation with Prime Minister Chou en Lai in China, April 1972; steered Malta in the Non-Aligned Movement, 1973; Abolished British Monarchy and founded a democratic Republic within the Commonwealth based on work and respect for fundamental rights and freedom of the individual, December 1974; he closed down the British base and established Malta's new status of non-aligned neutrality on 31 March 1979.
 
Various nations have recognised Mr Mintoff's contribution in this respect. In 1971 he was awarded the Order of the Republic by Libya and in 1973 Tunisia decorated him with the Grand Cordon De l'Ordre de la Republique. In 1976 he was awarded the doctorate 'Onoris Causa' by the University of Political Studies, Ponterios of Greece, and Morocco granted him the Order of the Gran Cordon of Oissam Alaouite in 1978.

On 22nd December 1984, Mr Mintoff voluntarily left office to enable his successor to take over. On 18th January 1985 he was appointed special advisor to the new Prime Minister Dr Carmelo Mifsud Bonnici.

Mr Mintoff has contributed several articles to scientific, literary and artistic publications.
 
He married the late Moyra de Vere Bentick. They had two daughters, Annie and Yana.
 
Mr Mintoff's pastimes were horse-riding, swimming, water-skiing and playing 'Boċċi'. He passed away on 20th August 2012.