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Alan Deidun Joins Marsaxlokk Residents In A ‘Passionate Call For Common Sense’ Amidst School Garden Plans

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Local marine biologist and environmentalist Alan Deidun has joined Marsaxlokk residents in a “passionate call for common sense” as a primary school garden faces threats of development.

The children attending the St Thomas More Primary School in Marsaxlokk are currently facing threats on their open green spaces, a beautiful garden that they all make use of and contribute to taking care of.

“I applaud the numerous Marsaxlokk residents and Birdlife Malta for opposing this lunacy and I strongly urge the Marsaxlokk local council to draw up plans to site the much-needed community centre in an alternative location in Marsaxlokk,” Deidun wrote in a Facebook status. 

“These plans will see the uprooting of 37 indigenous mature trees, which are destined to be a transplanted to a ‘roof garden accessible to the public’,” he said. 

Although the trees are being promised transplantation, many are arguing that a roof garden cannot even begin to be compared with a garden on real soil.

The proposed development includes the shifting of existing mature trees to make space for a community centre, offices to be used by the Local Council, a public library, and a public hall, as well as the take-up of a large portion of the school’s garden. 

Making reference to the fact that the site is not situated within ODZ land, Deidun appealed that the garden in question is still the source of enjoyment of many students and teachers at the school.

“Although the site is not an ODZ site, the garden in question is regularly enjoyed by students and teachers alike due to its green lung status,” he said.

“Rather than investing in new urban greening projects, we should safeguard what we already have,” he appealed. 

Apart from that, the garden in question forms part of the Dinja Waħda series of gardens nurtured by Birdlife Malta within local schools over the years.

“Is this the example we wish to give to our students whilst we encourage them to follow environmental education programmes like Dinja Waħda, Ekoskola, etc?” he questioned.

Just last week, Birdlife Malta also publicly announced its stance against the development and stated that it is highly disappointed by the proposal.

Representations are currently being submitted against this development, with the representation period open until 3rd January 2022.

Around 100 objections have been submitted so far.

Lovin Malta also recently spoke with parents of children attending the school, with many describing the proposal as disgusting and shameful.

Do you agree with Alan Deidun? 

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When Sasha (formerly known as Sasha Tas-Sigar) is not busy writing about environmental injustice, she's probably fighting for women's rights. Follow her at @saaxhaa on Instagram, and send her anything related to the environment, art, and women's rights at [email protected]

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