Qala local council opposes Joseph Portelli’s demand to sanction illegal ODZ work

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The local council of Qala formally opposed a request from the promoter Joseph Portelli for the sanction of illegal works in a part of the locality which is outside the development zone.

Lovin Malta has reported in recent weeks of illegal work undertaken by the mega-developer, several of which have been reported by militant group Moviment Graffitti.

The group accused the planning authority of turning a blind eye to the misdeeds of Portelli, who in turn continued to build his apartment building with a swimming pool and other facilities.

No permits have been obtained for the construction of the swimming pool and Portelli has now called for the work to be sanctioned by the Palestinian Authority.

The local council has now said it is opposing the request while an appeal process is still ongoing.

“As a council, we expect there will be support from the authorities who should end the work while it is still on appeal. The council will persist in its flight and will not be dissuaded from stopping these massive projects which destroy our locality ”, declared the mayor of Qala, Paul Buttigieg.

The 64 flat-project encountered opposition from the Qala Local Council and two environmental NGOs, Moviment Graffitti and Din L-Art Helwa, for which they lodged an appeal.

An environmental impact assessment was never carried out for the proposed development before the permit was issued, even if the site exceeds 30,000 m² of land.

The environment and town planning court also rejected requests from organizations and residents to suspend work until the appeal hearing is decided.

The disputed project is part of a the whole saga involving Carravan Company Limited, who served as an intermediary in the transfer and resale of land. The company was formed in 2017, making 1.5 million euros from sales last May alone.

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