The Malta Independent 21 March 2023, Tuesday
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TMID Editorial: Wrong move by Gozo Ministry

Friday, 27 January 2023, 15:37 Last update: about 3 months ago

That the Gozo ministry has hunting within its portfolio is a decision taken by the Prime Minister that has never been understood. The hunting sector should be placed within a ministry that, at least, should be seen as trying to keep it under control. For example, the environment ministry, as activists had suggested. That the minister responsible for hunting, Clint Camilleri, is openly in favour of the sport – if you can call it such – is an affront to environmentalists and people of goodwill.


It can never be perceived that the Gozo Ministry, with Camilleri at its helm, is doing its best to keep hunting within the limits of decency – again, if killing birds can ever be placed within any parameters of civility.

It is then outrageous to learn that the Gozo Ministry is financing activities that promote hunting in schools.

The Malta Independent has reported that the ministry is financially backing an exhibition by a hunters’ association, whose sole intention is to promote hunting in schools.  The exhibition is being organised by the Ghaqda Kaccaturi San Ubertu, and will be circulated on a weekly basis across government primary schools.

The exhibition will include the distribution of leaflets, two roll-up banners and two free-standing posters. Students will be invited to send their questions on hunting on a specific email address.

The aim of the project is to “show facts on legal hunting”. The circular was sent to all heads of school, who are invited to inform the association as to whether they would like to host the exhibition.

Such an exhibition should not be held and, much less, be financed by the government. And, if we have a minister who is more inclined to promote hunting than curb it, then others should be there to stop him. It is therefore perhaps even worse that the education authorities have agreed to such a move, and are inviting heads of school to host the exhibition in their school.

It is shameful that the Gozo Ministry is showing its full support to the promotion of hunting in schools. For one thing, hunting involves the use of firearms, and it is disgraceful to think that the government – through the Gozo Ministry – is pushing in this direction, given that children in schools are all minors and should be nowhere near any firearm.

Secondly, the idea that children are being encouraged to shoot birds is also reprehensible. Children should be taught to admire the beauty of birds, not to shoot them. Such an exhibition goes directly against what children should be educated in school – that nature should be nurtured, not destroyed.

The circular that has been distributed to heads of school tries to cushion the idea by speaking of “legal” hunting, trying to give the impression that all is well. But we all know where this “legal” hunting takes us.

The ministry should do the decent thing and withdraw its support. If not, the education authorities should not allow such an exhibition to be held on school grounds. And, if this does not happen, heads of school should not accept to have it.


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