Saturday, 25 April 2009

The disastrous state of the Victoria Playing Field

Few weeks ago, we visited the Playing Field in the heart of the capital of Gozo. I felt ashamed!

“A place intended as a recreation centre to be enjoyed by children and their parents has now been transformed into an abandoned and neglected area, posing a serious threat to health and safety of the general public, especially children.” These were the words uttered by Yvonne Ebejer Arqueros, one of the two AD candidates for the EP Elections, after visiting the site yesterday together with members of AD’s Regional Committee for Gozo.

I added that: “The scene is one of complete chaos. Broken glass litter the floor even under the swings; bags, containing refuse and other dangerous material, left to rot under the trees for months on end; damaged electric lamps and wires left unrepaired for years! The ramps are almost impossible even for non wheelchair-bound persons to negotiate. Such a state of utter neglect which Gozitan residents, Maltese visitors and tourists alike are facing should also be condemned by all those in authority who shoulder the responsibility not only for safeguarding the health and safety of the citizens but also for doing all they can to boost Gozo’s image as a showcase model for attracting the discerning `quality` tourist, thereby enhancing the tourist product and creating more job opportunities for Gozitan youth now and in the years to come.”

Arnold Cassola, AD Chairperson and EP candidate, said: “The playing field, lying in the very heart of the city of Victoria, has been neglected for years despite many complaints. Such a state of affairs is nothing less than an insult to all those Gozitans whose sole interest is to seek the common good of their island and who are not ready to cover up the mistakes and neglect of those Authorities and politicians who are paid from our taxes to work for the welfare of the country as a whole and not for partisan interests. Above all, such carelessness is an insult also to all those families with young children, who, by right, should be provided with facilities for relaxation and recreation in a clean , safe and healthy environment.”

Arnold Cassola concluded by saying: “Alternattiva Demokratika fully supports the Mayor and Councillors of Victoria, who, for the last three years, have been pleading for the transfer of the responsibility for the Garden from the Government to the Local Council. We are convinced that the Rabat Local Council have at heart the real welfare of the residents and no one else can do a better job in the transformation of the present disorderly mess into a beautiful garden and modern playing field, to be enjoyed by all Gozitans and visitors to this unique Gozitan capital city.”

For some reasons, this press conference was omitted from the news on the national TV station (PBS).

Believe your eyes by watching this video.

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