A woman whose apartment block in Gwardamanġa collapsed due to an adjacent construction site last June has issued some guidelines for people who feel their home is also at risk of destruction.
“Today is the 117th day since our home collapsed and no justice has been served for us yet,” Janet Walker said in a Facebook post. “We’ve started this path in spring, summer has passed and we’re now into autumn. How long must we keep waiting? If you think you will be affected too, listen to me and make sure you have nothing missing.”
Speaking out of experience, Walker advised people who fear their homes are at risk to ask the developer and architect of the construction site for copies of the site plans that were approved by the Planning Authority, their insurance, the commencement notice, the condition report, the method statement and a bank guarantee by the Building Regulations Office.
Moreover, she said people should send every complaint they have and every bit of damage to their property that they see to the BRO and to forward these complaints to the developer and architect of the construction site, “ideally in writing because a man’s word doesn’t mean much nowadays”.
She added that people should find their own architect as of now, speak to a lawyer and grow accustomed to the law.
The collapse of Walker’s apartment, as well as two other apartments in Gwardamanġa and Mellieħa, stunned the nation and jolted the government into action, with Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg pushing forward a legal notice to regulate the construction industry.
Site technical officers must now be licensed architects or engineers, method statements and condition reports drafted by architects must be more detailed than they used to and fines for developers who breach the law have been increased substantially.
Walker has gone public about her long quest for justice and was on the front line of a recent protest in Valletta against overdevelopment.