The Malta Independent 24 March 2019, Sunday

No Need for Gaddafi Gardens to be renamed

Malta Independent Friday, 24 June 2011, 00:00 Last update: about 6 years ago

There will be no need for the government to rename the Gaddafi Gardens next to the mosque in Paola, Resources and Rural Affairs Minister George Pullicino told this newspaper, because the gardens will soon make way for the new MCAST buildings.

He said the gardens do not fall under the ownership of the Muslim community in Malta but were built on public land at a time when relations between Malta and the Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi were at their closest in the 1970s.

The mosque next to the gardens was built in 1978.

On 10 June, the Mepa board approved two applications which will kick-start the construction work on a new MCAST campus at Corradino. The first application regarded the excavation of the big football ground next to the current campus. The second application regarded the construction of the first three of the many colleges that the campus will eventually house.

According to Mepa, the Gaddafi Gardens will make way for new sports facilities, which will be connected to the main campus thanks to a bridge.

The works should be completed within 18 months’ time. MCAST is aiming to attract over 8,000 full-time students and 13,000 part-time students by 2015.

Shortly after the start of the Libyan crisis in mid-February, many urged the government to sever all its ties with the Libyan leader and to rename the gardens in Paola.

Col Gaddafi was made honorary member of the ‘Xirka Gieħ ir-Repubblika’ on 5 December, 1975 and honorary companion of honour of the National Order of Merit on 8 February, 2004.

On 8 March, the Attorney General said that honours bestowed on Col Gaddafi by Malta can only be revoked by the President acting on a resolution approved by Parliament.

Dr Peter Grech was replying to a letter sent by former Nationalist MP Frank Portelli to the President calling on him to revoke honours given to Col Gaddafi.

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