Are People Seriously Building On Fomm Ir-Riħ?
When you see it...
A photo which was shared on local NGO Din L-Art Ħelwa's public Facebook forum last weekend is causing a stir online, and it's very easy to see why when you do spot what's wrong with it.
The person who posted on the group on Sunday morning, shared two photos highlighting the issue at hand... a structure bang in the middle of the cliffs leading down to the sea, along with what appear to be bricks and building materials for a potential future construction.
"I like Fomm ir-Riħ as a fairly isolated spot to enjoy our decreasing nature," the man told Lovin Malta. "I often go by bike as I did last weekend."
Dozens of people immediately joined the conversation in the comments section of the photos, expressing rage, disappointment or simply reaffirming that, at the face of so many reported illegalities, many are just flat out giving up.
"It's a pretty sad day when you have to fight the government to protect the land," one user added.
The post also caught the attention of Professor Alan Deidun, who is a Council member of Din L-Art Ħelwa and an Associate Professor at the Physical Oceanography Research Group who's written hundreds of popular science articles. Within a couple of hours, Professor Deidun reported the issue directly to the Planning Authority enforcement and to the Environment and Resources Authority. When he was informed that no recent permits were granted on site, Professor Deidun lodged a formal complaint with enforcement.
Lovin Malta reached out to Professor Deidun to get more information on the issue. "I know for sure that enforcement from the Planning Authority visited the site in the past few days following my complaint. The will probably send their response over email in the coming days," he said, although he did admit that they might need some nudging since he hadn't received anything yet.
Update: An email was sent to Professor Deidun yesterday, informing him that his complaint has been registered and forwarded to the attention of the Enforcement Directorate.