Tista' taqra bil- Malti.
Activist group, Moviment Graffitti has announced that in light of the recent incidents of houses collapsing due to construction work, they are organizing a protest to express anger against the Dictatorship of Malta’s developers.
In their statement, Graffitti said that the protest will be held on Tuesday 18 June and will start from near St. Luke’s Hospital in Gwardamangia at 6pm and end outside the MDA headquarters, ‘to protest the arrogance of Sandro Chetcuti’s lobby.’
They state that they have long warned about this situation, stressing that developers can no longer do as they please at the expense of residents who are faced with noise, dust, closed roads, cranes, illegal waste disposal, hazards and “the arrogance of unscrupulous developers” on a daily basis. They claim that all of this is done with the blessing of the Planning Authority.
Added to this, they state that with such recent incidents and media pressure, the government has now begun to address this problem “that has spread out of control”.
Their protest comes in the wake of a number of very recent building collapses in Malta in Pieta and Mellieha.
The Prime Minister Joseph Muscat announced on Thursday that demolition and excavation permits would be suspended until further notice.
Moviment Graffitti outlines a list of urgent demands in order to safeguard the safety of residents around Malta, who are now scared of staying in their own homes:
- An end to the boundless arrogance and bullying of developers on residents;
- A limit to permits issued by the various authorities and an end to the laissez-faire in the planning sector;
- A restriction on the hours in which construction and excavation works can be carried out, and a limit on the number of road closures and parking slots stolen from residents;
- A law that imposes decent standards to safeguard the residents’ health and safety in areas close to construction sites;
- A serious enforcement of the laws regulating construction, to give, without exception, protection and dignity to workers and residents alike;
- That responsibility is taken for the permanent deformation of our islands, particularly when such incidents are involved: so far, nobody has taken responsibility for any of these accidents.
“We agree that the geological and geo-technical surveys made mandatory” – FAA
In a statement from Flimkien għal Ambjent Aħjar, claims that the Prime Minister’s decision to temporarily suspend the demolition and excavation was too late. Despite this, they welcomed the proposal for making geological and geo-technical surveys mandatory for all excavation work.
The FAA also questioned whether to begin introducing tests on concrete durability believing that there are many residential buildings being built now which will face major problems in the next 30 or 40 years.
The group argued that although the authorities are trying to point fingers at referees, the governments had tried repeatedly to reform the building regulations since 2007. This has also included requests from Kamra Tal-Periti.