It was just announced that our Islands will benefit from 2.2 billion euros of EU funds. From this amount 10% will be dedicated to my Island, Gozo. 10% is always being repeatedly said as dedicated for Gozo, but details of actually what is being spent, or left unspent, on projections in Gozo remains sadly lacking.
This, when great and wonderful projects are continuously being carried out in Malta, one major project after another, whilst here in Gozo we are not seeing these kind of projects. On this I felt a pinch of jealousy, with so many achievements on the mainland, whilst there are so very few in Gozo.
Also we residents living in Gozo do not know what is actually spent on the projects that are taking place, or whether they do in fact amount to the 10% always dedicated to Gozo. We are being left totally in the dark regarding information on this and many other important matters.
Ministers, MPs and an MEP
Gozo enjoys three ministers, three MPs and one MEP, quite a massive representation. So we Gozitans expect massive improvement in our way of life, especially pertaining to health, culture and embellishment projects.
Now let’s see what actually is being, or has been achieved:
a) The St Joseph Home for Elderly People in Ghajnsielem: This was initiated many years ago, after all these years the project has been left completely abandoned. This when Government is wasting thousands upon thousands of euros in hiring a private place to house our senior citizens in. This money is being thrown away rather than benefiting our senior citizens.
b)The Court Buildings: This project is still waiting for it’s implementation. Numerous complaints have been made about this from Lawyers, as well as senior citizens who cannot make it up to where the courts are situated due to their health. A solution has been promised for years and years, but there is still no end in sight. Shame. Why can no solution be found for a new easily accessible place for these courts?
c) Gozo Swimming Pool: This was originally initiated by the first Labour Minister for Gozo, it continued under the 2nd 3rd and now 4th Minister for Gozo. Only on this has there been some progress, slow and steady, but with a question mark still on the completion date.
In the meanwhile we see grand projects being achieved in relativity short times over in Malta.
d) Gozo Heritage Sites: historical sites such as Fort Chambray’s outer walls and Polvarista, the Trunciera, Ghar Gerduf, the Aqueducts, the Punic Temple in Kercem/Ghasri, Ghar Ilma and so many others such as the Tac-Cawla sites have never been included in any reports of restorations.
Parking areas are also very urgently needed, especially in our capital city of Victoria.
e) Priority Ferry Boarding for Gozitan Patients: Also the need for immediate implementation is the restoration of being returned to Gozo from Mater Dei Hospital. Chemo patients & other urgent patients are being left waiting at Cirkewwa for hours as these are high and vessels would not be able to lower one of the upper decks. This conflicts with the Gozitan Patients’ Health issues, as in all roads whenever there is an ambulance or a Police siren, all transport stop for these to pass through.
It appears that in recent months this does not apply to the Gozo Channel regarding Gozitan patients. This is completely wrong and has to be clarified.
Gozo Channel also desperately needs two new ferries for passenger service. Gaudos can cater for cargo leaving the others free for passenger services. The MV Nikolaos ferry is not adequate for passengers and has to be replaced by these two new ferries.
These are absolutely essential for Gozo’s connection to the mainland and definitely not the proposed air link which is a nonstarter from its inception.
All of these much needed works and services could surely be easily achieved when Gozo purportedly enjoys 10% of all European Funds being dedicated specifically for Gozo.
However no financial accounts are being issued by the government for we Gozitans to really know what is actually being spent, not spent and/or returned to the government due to time limitations.
The Ongoing Tragic Rape of Gozo
Our village cores are being completely decimated by rampant over development, such destructive building is completely destroying our island and our social fabric, it has to be immediately stopped by the authorities. Do not let Gozo and Comino lose any more of their charm and rural aspects.
We in Gozo have had more than enough of this ruinous building invasion and the ongoing destruction of our Island.
Former Member of Parliament.
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