The Malta Independent 26 September 2023, Tuesday
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100 chairs placed in front of Castille to remember Covid-19 victims

Tuesday, 17 November 2020, 17:31 Last update: about 4 years ago

Protestors placed 100 chairs in front of Castille as a symbolic memorial to the victims of coronavirus on Tuesday.

Civil society group Repubblika set up the impromptu protest calling out that Prime Minister Robert Abela’s administration had mismanaged the pandemic.

So far, Malta registered 101 deaths, a vast majority being elderly people, and the youngest being 46 years old.

“We are here to remember that we have lost more than 100 people and for us these deaths are not just numbers. These are the losses of many individuals who would still be with us if it were not for the disease. Behind me, are a hundred empty seats presenting these victims of Covid-19. That means that there are a hundred families who have lost their relatives,” said spokesperson Alessandra Dee Crespo.

She said that now is the time to have heavier restrictions, but the government refuses to do so. “It is clear that the government has abandoned this ambition to safeguard the public and now there are no more health services meetings.”

She said that doctors and medical associations have voiced their opinions of the inconsistent policies of the government which is leading to more deaths. “The government keeps sending conflicting messages, one moment stating to stay safe but at the same time going out and enjoy ourselves.”

Crespo also mentioned the recently announced events such as Christmas in the City, where after the government announced the full programme, Health Minister Chris Fearne said that no one had showed him what was planned.

“Is that not irresponsible? Everyone in Malta is asked to make sure that people are not gathering this Christmas, but then our government organises events for crowds and the Minister of Health says that no one asked him what he thought.”

She said that the government has stopped taking into account the hard work of doctors and nurses, and how that hospitals are no longer able to cope. She thanked the front liners, those who she said continuously work hard for the public’s welfare.

“We demand that the government focuses on COVID-19 and shows respect to those victims and their relatives and we call on each other to take care of one another, wear masks, maintain social distance and avoid crowds because it is obvious that our government does not care about us.”

Towards the end of the protest, Abela made a brief appearance as he left Castille to go to a press conference in Hal-Safi and was heckled by activists who criticised him for not wearing his mask.

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