'Absolutely No Justification To Deny People Access To Parliament' - Repubblika Activist Manuel Delia
Civil society activist group Repubblika have taken their grievances to court and filed a judicial protest after being denied entry into the strangers’ gallery in parliament.
The strangers’ gallery exists so that any member of the public that wants to watch parliamentary sittings can from within the dedicated chamber. However, speaker of the house Anġlu Farrguia has denied access on grounds of ‘pandemic safety’.
Speaking to SideStreet Malta Repubblika activist Manuel Delia said there is “absolutely no justification'' to deny citizens their right to observe the debates and legislative process in person, and that this is a “lame excuse” especially in light of the fact that most COVID restrictions have now been relaxed.
“We have filed a judicial protest where we argued that this measure is anti-democratic and we will continue to insist on our right to access parliament”
Parliament has been barricaded with metal barriers since the 2019 protests which led former disgraced prime minister Joseph Muscat to resign.
PN leader Bernard Grech showed his support for the activists’ cause, similarly accusing the government of using the pandemic as "an excuse to be a dictatorial regime."
The Opposition leader also recommended the Strangers Gallery be renamed the People's Gallery.
Do you think the people should be allowed access into parliament again ?