SIR PAUL BOFFA: PRIME MINISTER OF MALTA (1947
Born in Vittoriosa on the 30 June 1890, Paul Boffa was educated
at the Lyceum and at the University of Malta from where he
graduated as a Medical Doctor in 1912. During World War I he
served with the Royal Medical Corps in Malta, Salonika and on
hospital ships. After the war he set up in private practice in
Paul Boffa entered politics when Malta was granted self
government in 1921 and joined the Labour Party in 1923. He was
returned to Parliament under the Amery-Milner Constitution in
1924, 1927 and 1932. He was elected Leader of the Labour Party
in 1927 and immediately began to instil in the workers the
need of rightfully equal representation in government in order
to have a say in their own affairs. He was in coalition with
Lord Strickland's party in government (1927-32). In 1932
Paul Boffa was the only Labour Party candidate elected to the
Legislative Assembly until it was dissolved in 1933. He was
nominated as a member of the Executive Council from 1936-1939.
During World War II Paul Boffa served with distinction as
district Commissioner and ARP Medical Officer in the Cottonera
? Paola ? Tarxien ? Luqa areas. He was awarded the O.B.E.
In the 1945 elections, Dr Boffa was again elected in the
Labour Party's interests. Boffa reached the acme of his
political career in November 1947 when, he became the first
Labour Prime Minister leading a majority government of 24
Labour members. In 1949, following the Labour Party's
ultimatum to Britain concerning financial help, the Labour
Party split up but Dr. Boffa continued as Prime Minister and
later founded and led the Malta Workers' Party (MWP). The
MWP lost the 1950 Elections.
Boffa was re-elected in 1951 and in 1953 and joined a
coalition government with the PN led by George Borg Olivier,
assuming the portfolio of Minister of Health and Social
Services. The MWP did not contest the 1955 elections and in
1955 he resigned for health reasons. He retained an interest
in politics and was nominated Honorary President of the
Christian Workers' Party (CWP).
Boffa was created a Knight Bachelor in the 1956 New
Year's Honours List in recognition of distinguished public
services. He was also awarded the 1914-18 Star, the General
Service Medal, the Victory Medal, the Coronation Medal and the
Boffa was instrumental in obtaining recognition for the
Maltese Language in the law courts, and the introduction of
compulsory primary education and old-age pensions.
In 1921, he married Genoveffa Cecy and had two sons and two
daughters. He died at his residence in Paola and is buried at
the All Souls Cemetery in Tarxien.