Press Release 02.09.2015

Press Release 2nd September, 2015

Għaxaq ODZ: Prime Minister, Arcbishop did not reply to Front’s invitation

Front Harsien ODZ said that the Prime Minister, the Archbishop, the MEPA Chairman and the Dominican Provincial have not repled to its letter sent on 8 August for a win-win solution to the Ghaxaq ODZ issue (copy of the letter below).

Front Harsien ODZ had appealed that the Applicants of the proposed development withdraw the pending application at Ghaxaq and that concurrently, the Government of Malta and MEPA commit to identify alternative sites for the College. Such sites should not be on ODZ land but can include, among others, brownfield sites, sites previously used by the Government for purposes such as schooling, and other Government-owned land.

Front Harsien ODZ expressed its disappointment that all four authorities have not accepted its invitation for a solution based on goodwill and mutual respect, in order that an adequate site may be found for St Albert College instead of the current one in Valletta and the proposed one in Ghaxaq.

Front referred to the Provincial’s press release dated 23rd June (copy attached with this email), which had stated that the Province was ready to accept realistic offers from the Government, possibly in the Southern part of Malta.

“When the Zonqor issue emerged, there was also much furor about the Ghaxaq issue. Front Harsien ODZ is actively committed to safeguard ODZ land from development in both cases, as well as in other similar cases”.

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Copy of letter sent on 8 August:

To the Prime Minister, Archbishop, Dominican Provincial and MEPA Chairman,

Dear Sirs,

Front Harsien ODZ, a citizens’ movement with environmental aims is very preoccupied with the possibility of having St Albert’s College being developed on ODZ land, despite the fact that such development falls within the local plan.

Front Harsien ODZ notes that the current premises of St Albert’s College is inadequate and that an alternative site must be found to cater for its educational services.

We therefore propose that the Applicants of the proposed development withdraw the pending application at Ghaxaq and that concurrently, the Government of Malta and MEPA commit to identify alternative sites for the College. Such sites should not be on ODZ land but can include, among others, brownfield sites, sites previously used by the Government for purposes such as schooling, and other Government-owned land.

We believe that through goodwill, trust and mutual respect, a win-win solution can be found as regards the proposed development.

We trust in your good faith to resolve the matter and thus close this controversy once and for all, to everyone’s benefit.

Signed By:
Monique Agius,
Dr Michael Briguglio,
James Debono,
Dr Shaun Grech.

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