A small group of residents from St Paul’s Bay spent hours yesterday scraping off unsightly graffiti from various parts of their town. The graffiti in question is believed by the group to have been sprayed by Serbian residents in the Qawra and Buġibba areas.
The writing is, according to another Serbian resident who partook in the clean-up, about two opposing Serbian football teams – Red Star Belgrade and FK Partizan. Although she said that the likelihood is that the graffiti actually represents a turf war going on between the Serbians residents.
Resident Oliver Mallia proposed a clean-up in a local Facebook group – Proud to live in St Paul’s Bay – inviting other residents to meet up and start tackling the problem immediately.
The resident clean-up team got to work on the graffiti using wire brushes to scrape the spray paint with. Despite hundreds of likes and comments on the Facebook group, only a handful of residents turned up to help.
The group managed to clean four vandalised areas, but a lot of graffiti still remains all over the town.
Unfortunately, the problems don’t stop there. Lovin Malta spoke to another resident who participated in the clean-up, Simon Cutajar, who lamented on the state of public spaces in the town.
“There’s also a serious problem with theft and littering,” Cutajar said. When asked whether the littering issue stems from a lack of bins, or just the culture of the neighbourhood, Cutajar said it’s a culmination of the two problems.
“It’s a bit of both actually, people are always reporting rubbish being thrown in the streets. To be fair the Local Council provides a daily garbage collection (even twice in some areas) and daily bulky refuse collection. But there’s no enforcement from the police or wardens.”
The Mayor of St Paul’s Bay has now been in touch with Eddie Bonello and will be heading the next clean-up herself. The efforts will continue next Saturday with, hopefully, a larger turnout from residents.
Updates about the clean-up will be posted in the Proud to live in St Paul’s Bay Facebook group. If you are a St Paul’s Bay resident, or anyone living in Malta who would like to help out with this initiative, ask to join the private group on Facebook and follow the updates.