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Construction sector chaos leads to public protest on Tuesday

Moviment Graffitti's protest at the Planning Authority in September 2018. Photo: Moviment Graffitti

All those “angry, fed up and worried” about the situation resulting from rampant development in the country can join a protest being organised by Moviment Graffitti on Tuesday.

The protest is being organised after a series of incidents in which buildings collapsed, risking the safety and security of residents and workers. The organisation is inviting resident associations and citizens to “show their displeasure at the way they have been treated by the developers’ lobby and their dictatorship”.

Moviment Graffitti said it has repeatedly warned about the sad state of affairs: “Developers do as they please all over Malta, to the detriment of residents who have to face, day to day, noise, dust, road closures, traffic, illegal dumping of waste, physical hazards, and the arrogance of the developers who clearly have no interest in anything but making millions”.

The Chamber of Architects has also been heavily critical of the “chaos that prevails in the construction industry” and called for an overhaul of the regulatory framework.

Moviment Graffitti listed a number of demands aimed at safeguarding the safety of residents in different localities across the island “who are now scared of staying in their homes”.

The demands include “an end to the boundless arrogance and bullying of developers on residents” as well as a limit on permits issued. The organisation proposes the need for a law that imposes decent standards to safeguard residents’ health and safety in areas close to construction sites, as well as the enforcement of existing laws “without exception”.

Moviment Graffitti is also demanding restrictions on the hours in which construction and excavation works can occur, and a limit on the number of road closures and parking slots “stolen from residents”.

The NGO points out that no responsibility has so far been carried for the incidents that occurred that put people’s lives at risk. The activists demanded responsibility “for the permanent deformation of our islands”.

“We encourage all those who are angry, fed up and worried about this situation to join this protest,” the organisation said.

The protest on Tuesday 18 June will start at the area in front of St Luke’s Hospital at 6pm, followed by a short walk to the Malta Developers Association (MDA) headquarters.

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You can protest, you are free(ish)