Environmental activists from pressure group Moviment Graffitti staged a demonstration physically stopping diggers from developing an ODZ field into a road in Dingli.
In a video uploaded by the group, a number of protestors can be seen halting works on the site by getting in the way of workers as well as pushing back on the machinery. Police were on site and could be seen attempting to calm both workers and protestors as they clashed.
Others were carrying placards calling out the development as construction workers can be seen getting frustrated over the interruptions to their work.
“This morning, Infrastructure Malta appeared in Dingli to attempt to build a road on ODZ fields, for which they have no permit,” the activist group said. “For the third time, we, farmers and residents are there to stop them. We are calling on everyone to join us whilst keeping social distancing.”
“Besides the fields, this road leading to nowhere will destroy carob trees over 300 years old and endanger a medieval church.”
The controversial Dingli road alignment project seeks to connect Sqaq il-Museum, Daħla tas-Sienja, and Triq San Ġwann Bosco on partially ODZ land.
Infrastructure Malta had previously stated that the proposed road can be built without a permit, justifying its claims by saying that the road is scheduled in the North West Local Plan of 2006.
If the road alignment project takes place, private fields, old carob trees, and rooms used for farming are set to be destroyed. A number of carob trees have already been cut down in preparation for the project.