Planning Minister Ian Borg has been forced to revisit his big summer plans after his dream of having a swimming pool of his own was today squashed by the courts.
The permit to build the pool in question – which was going to be developed on agricultural land -. was challenged by Dingli resident Noel Ciantar after the project was approved after some minors changes were added.
A court of appeal ruled today that the development should not be permitted and the permit issued by the Planning Authority was illegal.
It was argued that the policy used to justify the project did not apply to the rural area where Borg’s home resides. The court added that regulation actually makes it clear that a swimming pool in a rural settlement was not permitted.
The permit was thus declared null and void.
Borg’s supporters still found time to praise the Minister after he took to social media to say that while this decision supersedes the PA’s permit, it does not actually declare it void and “is still valid.”
“Thank you to all of those who stood by my wife and me,” he wrote.
A litany of “well dones” followed from his supporters, who in a weird twist also wrote that “what’s right will always prevail” while praising him for his ‘victory’.
The site itself, which is located in Santa Katerina within Rabat, has courted controversy in the past after it was given a PA permit to develop an ODZ dwelling into a 400-metre residence.
An Ombudsman’s investigation followed, who said that the decision to award the permit was a “grave error”. However, no proof of corruption was found, and the recommendation was ignored and the property developed.