Necessary government support is altogether lacking – AD
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Speaking at press conference in Victoria, Alternattiva Demokratika Chairperson, Dr. Harry Vassallo, together members of the AD Gozo Regional Committee, said that the Ministry for Gozo needed constant prodding to provide the public support needed by cultural activities.
“The collapse of the medieval chapel of Santa Cecilia near the heliport in Gozo was a disaster waiting to happen. The Ministry successfully resisted the pressure made by almost everyone for long years until the disaster did happen in the last days.” Dr. Vassallo said.
Dr. Vassallo added that culture was also a question of fostering traditions and popular artistic creations. “The various groups who invest time, energy and lots of money to build carnival floats, not only provide enjoyment for the crowd but are also the mainstay of an annual event of cultural and economic significance.”
“Speaking to the groups from Victoria and Xaghra, it is clear that the necessary government support is altogether lacking” Dr. Vassallo said.
“It is perfectly reasonable for such groups to be allowed to build their floats in available government premises such as vacant factories or sheltered in the Public Works compound in Xewkija at least during the Carnival period.”
Dr. Vassallo said that the absence of this minimal support is tantamount to deliberate discouragement more than the customary neglect. Dr. Vassallo said “This discouragement has already eliminated a number of other village groups which would otherwise add to the Gozo Carnival.”
Dr. Vassallo advised all participating groups to work together and safeguard their craft and tradition as well as to set themselves long term aims such as the setting up of a Carnival Museum which would become another venue for visitors to Gozo as well as a source of revenue for the Carnival. “A vote for Alternattiva Demokratika means that AD in a coalition government will bring forces together to secure such assets for the common good of our nation” concluded Dr. Harry Vassallo.