Swieqi Residents Are Begging For CCTV Cameras To Prevent Daily Vandalism
The rage is palpable
Swieqi residents are begging their Local Council to set up CCTV cameras and any other tools that could help combat the theft, vandalism and violence they are witnessing on an almost daily basis.
Being adjacent to Malta's nightlife centre Paceville, Swieqi is often at the receiving end of spillover drunken antics.
"We live in daily fear of having our cars damaged or our houses broken into," Matthew Camilleri told Lovin Malta. He started a poll on a Facebook group called Swieqi Residents to see whether there was enough demand to crowdfund CCTV cameras to deter aggressors.
His post attracted a slew of comments from other angry residents, each with their own stories of violence, theft or vandalism.
Just this week there were reports of two drunken men fighting in the street with knives and trying to break into houses at 7.30am. A woman who opened up for the two men thinking they were a neighbour in need, was shocked to have them walking into her house filled with blood.
"They went in the bathroom and filled the place with blood, towels and all," her sister-in-law wrote on the group. But residents have hundreds of other stories to recount.
"A bunch of vandals spray painted all the white cars next to the park in Swieqi road. My sister's white car had a lovely black line from boot to bonnet," said one angry resident.
"My car was keyed four times in three weeks and my mirrors have been smashed seven times in four years," said another.
"Somebody walked over the roof of my car leaving foot prints and a dented roof. One mirror was smashed, one wiper snapped and there was vomit all over the bonnet leaving a stain that did not even go off with a polish machine."
"My car was keyed four times in three weeks and my mirrors have been smashed seven times in four years."
Many residents have given up on finding help from the Local Council since it seems to be heavily underfunded. The council had successfully campaigned for a police station to be opened in Swieqi but this was only effective when police carried out regular patrols. Residents now say these patrols seem to have stopped altogether.
"I believe it is time we do something about our own security. We are no longer safe and the authorities don't seem to give a heck about it. Things are getting worse by the day and both the authorities and our representatives seem to be taking it too lightly. We should act before its too late," said another resident on the group.
Mayor Noel Muscat responded to the residents by saying the council was working on installing mobile CCTV cameras in collaboration with the Malta Tourism Authority. "I will do my best to have security in the area increased," he added.