Monday, 5 October 2009

PR on the reclaiming of the foreshore

Ramblers hail P.S. Dr Jason Azzopardi’s achievement as historic breakthrough
(See previous post)

All Maltese, not just the Ramblers’ Association of Malta (RAM), must have been elated at the news of Parliamentary Secretary Dr Jason Azzopardi’s historic breakthrough in reclaiming a sizeable tract of relatively unspoiled land, including over 4km of shoreline, in the region of Fomm ir-Rih. What had been in private hands for over 300 years is now public property enjoyable by all the Maltese as well as by tourists. All this thanks to the P.S.’s unstinting leadership of his dedicated team of researchers at the Lands Department.

RAM thanks Dr Azzopardi also for kindly acknowledging our Association’s pivotal role in the genesis of this initiative. In July 2008 RAM held a protest march from Bahrija to Fomm ir-Rih to highlight the difficulty of access to the bay and other irregularities taking place there.

Following this, RAM met the PS, during which he read with great interest the documentation we produced on this matter and listened to our complaints regarding the problem of access to the shoreline in various places. There was no hesitation on his part to decide that these matters had to be seen to. We note with satisfaction that he has widened his action to encompass the whole area around Fomm ir-Rih Bay. This must have entailed considerable research in deeds going back three centuries.

Dr Azzopardi has not only enforced the public’s right of access to the Fomm ir-Rih bay and foreshore, but is planning to enforce the access route “discovered” and highlighted by RAM in the 1980s contracts between the government and the owners of the land.

RAM therefore expresses its appreciation of Dr Azzopardi’s belief in our Association and the cooperation he has always offered to us. We are delighted at his success in following the process through and thank him for returning this land to the Maltese people.

Joseph Agius


Ramblers’ Association of Malta

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