This evening at 7.00p.m., as they do every month, activists, friends and supporters of Daphne Caruana Galizia, will meet at the makeshift memorial in Great Siege Square Valletta to repeat their calls for justice. This particular activity organised by Occupy Justice and Manuel Delia, will take place at the end of just over a week marked by almost daily controversies.
Unknown people have removed the photos of the assassinated journalist, and the candles and flowers left by the activists repeatedly. However the memorial was always fixed back in place. Ahead of the Victory Day celebrations, scaffolding were erected around the Great Siege monument where routine polishing took place. The memorial was replaced however it was quickly removed, and on Victory Day, the Great Siege monument was completely walled off using wooden planks. Restoration works were cited by the Culture Minister however the ministry has to date still to provide Newsbook.com.mt with a restoration method statement.
Justice banner placed back after being removed within hours
On Saturday, Newsbook.com.mt, was at the Great Siege memorial transmitting live footage when activists placed a new banner carrying a stencilled face of Daphne Caruana Galizia and the word “justice”. Within a matter of hours the banner was removed by the employees from the Public Cleansing Department. However following a police report filed by the same activists the banner, flowers and candles were returned by the employees and reinstated over the hoarding just in time for the Pride March coming down Republic Street. The activists have spent a night guarding the banner.
Newsbook journalist prevented from filming, IGM reacts
As the banner was being removed, Newsbook journalist Christoph Schwaiger was on site filming. However a person who identified himself as an employee of the Public Cleansing Department tried to prevent the journalist from filming, holding his hand and mobile. The employee later apologized to the journalist when the two met at the Police Station, where a police report was filed. The Institute of Maltese Journalists strongly condemned the incident.
62 lawyers back bid to save the memorial
Independent journalist and blogger Manuel Delia took to the courts to prevent the memorial from being dismantled again on Saturday evening by requesting a temporary injunction arguing that this was a breach of his freedom of expression against Culture Minister Owen Bonnici. The injunction was signed by lawyers Karol Aquilina, Jason Azzopardi, Eve Borg Constanzi and Therese Comodini Cachia, and supported by more than 60 lawyers including former Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi. Judge Noel Cuschieri refused the requested for a temporary injunction. However a hearing was scheduled for 5 October.
News banners up at night
Three banners were put up at night by unknown activists, each one carried the wording “Daphne blown to pieces” however the second part of the sentence varied. The banners were aimed at the Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, Opposition Leader Adrian Delia and the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff Keith Schembri. The activist banner said that Muscat was happily left in peace, Schembri referred to as “Kasco” was getting richer, and Delia was full of worry.
Vigil tonight to mark 11th month
The speakers at this evening’s vigil will be Thomas Cassar Ruggier, Jeremy Gingell, Marion Pace Axiaq and Joanna Agius. The vigil will take place at 7pm in Great Siege Square Valletta.
Activist Alessandra Dee Crespo uploaded a video with a brass band in the background playing Land of Hope and Glory as they passed in front of the memorial as part of the St Augustine feast celebrations. In her post, Dee Crespo said that the activists would not allow Malta from being hijacked by the corrupt and the unpatriotic, as the patriotic tune played in the background.
Video by Alessandra Dee Crespo