Godfrey Grima, a veteran journalist and political commentator who created one of Malta’s largest advertising agencies, died on Monday after being infected with COVID-19. 

He was 79. 

His daughter Julianne announced his death on Facebook, writing "I am without words." 

Grima's funeral will be held on Tuesday, she added. 

Grima started his career as a foreign correspondent for the Financial Times in the mid-1960s, working for the renowned broadsheet’s foreign desk with a focus on political and economic affairs. He continued to contribute to the newspaper until 2010. 

He followed his career in journalism with an equally successful one in the private sector, founding the public relations and advertising firm Associated News Group in 1986. The company is today known as TBWA\ANG. 

Żejtun-raised Grima came from a highly political family, with his brother Joe rising to become a minister during Labour governments in the 1980s. He consulted for both the Labour and Nationalist parties, helping to draft reports for both parties following electoral defeats. 

Grima served on the University of Malta council as a member appointed by the prime minister. 

He was given a Medal for Service to the Republic in 2017 for his work in journalism.

The Labour Party said Grima would be remembered as a "giant" of Maltese journalism for his contributions both locally and abroad. 

In a statement, the PN party also referred to Grima's international and local achievements and offered its condolences to his family. 

Academic Carmen Sammut paid tribute to Grima on Facebook, recalling his friendship with writer Oliver Friggieri and political discussions she had with him, while offering the Grima family her condolences. 

 

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