The Police stole my car...
Dear Gibraltarians, (by that I mean
everyone living in Gibraltar – regardless of race colour or creed),
I wrote to you a few years ago when I was living in the UK because I
wanted to share my admiration to how you were united in your fight
for freedom. In your fight for what was rightfully yours, your
homeland. In my letter I mentioned how you should let your
government know what you wanted so that they could act accordingly.
You did and eventually they acted … the referendum was held and both
Britain and Spain realised they could not act as if you did not
I write to you all now as a local having lived here for a number of
years with my wife and son. My feelings have changed now and I find
myself questioning whether we even need the UK by our side,
especially as of late they never seem to be on our side. One thing
however has not changed in my mind the way that we must continuously
keep the government, our government, in the know. We, all of us,
must complain when it is necessary and applaud when it is necessary.
THE GOVERNMENT OF GIBRALTAR DOES HAVE AN EMPLOYER, IT IS YOU AND I,
WE OWN IT! ALL OF US! We all have the vote so we all have the power.
With all this in mind I would like to comment on a few things:
I have had to visit the new hospital and I have to say that I was
impressed in the way the staff went about their business, the place
looked clean and new. I would like to thank the government for this
new establishment and I look forward to it being used by as few
people as possible. (This would mean we are all well)
We all know about the problems we have here, not enough apartments
to meet demand. The thing is that there are enough but no one can
afford them. We need to build about 2,000 apartments that cost less
than £30,000.00 for a 2 bed by the next election in my opinion.
This government does not realise that most of our population does
not earn enough to buy a 1 bedroom apartment in today’s market, if
they did they would have acted by now. The only way locals can
afford to buy is to get family to help them obtain a mortgage. Why
has the government not built any houses? Because all those people
who can’t afford to live here will leave, these would be the people
who would not vote for the government anyway. I believe we need to
increase the number of people who live in this wonderful place. The
more Gibraltarians who live here the better the place would be. We
should not be sending our own to another country.
If you don’t own a garage then you must have been fined by now, if
not, you have obviously learned how to navigate the boarded signs
that tell people when they can’t park due to cleaning. You can’t
leave your car parked for more than one day without checking it
because a sign could be placed by it and before you know it, it’s
been towed away, you then need to worry about the fee to redeem your
Today my car was towed away from the commonwealth parade. I parked
at the Kings Bastion end the day before and there were signs up
telling me it had to be moved by Friday 15th July. Well as I said it
was towed away today Thursday 14th July because someone had made a
mistake. I went down and spoke to the police man there and he
informed me that they had to clear the area as a part of the bastion
needed to be demolished. I was told that machinery was being brought
in early and because of this they had brought the day forward. I was
also told that I would not be charged for the tow.
I was furious I had been careful and yet my car had still been towed
away. It was LEGALLY PARKED and yet it had been towed away … In my
opinion this is nothing short of theft… The police have actually
stolen my car. In my mind they had no right to take it away. It was
their mistake, their bad planning and yet it is now my problem. I
have to take time from my day, I have to lose money and customers
because of a governmental error. The bottom line is that someone
somewhere has taken the decision that affecting the lives of people
living in the area is more cost effective than correcting the
mistake and delaying the machinery that is on it’s way. The only
reason cars were taken from the Parade today was because it was
CHEAPER than to put off the machinery for an extra day.
Bottom line … This government thinks it can treat its locals as
though they are not important. Well we are important, change your
attitude or we will change our government.
Gibraltar is a great place,
Gibraltar is a Rock,
Gibraltar is the world for me,
but most of all Gibraltar is the people.
We own it, it is ours, and we want to keep it. You don’t barter a
deal with someone just so they stop intimidating you. You tell them
What I believe we need now more than ever is a government who will
put Gibraltar first … GIBRALTAR THE PEOPLE ... NOT GIBRALTAR THE
Remember we all hold the vote.
Kind regards to you all
MR Louis C Bruzon
14 July 2005
Cancer Research Dinner Dance
On Friday 24th June 2005, a gala Dinner Dance was held at the
International Casino in aid of Cancer Research. Together with a
grand raffle, over £3,500-was raised. The winning tickets were as
Mediterranean cruise donated by Calypso Travel - Mr H Gomez
2 Flights to the UK donated by Monarch Airlines - Mr P Cruz
Weekend for 2 donated by Gib Sun Club - Mrs F Dellipiani
DVD Player donated by Kaycee - Mrs T Wink
Mobile Phone donated by A & J Phones - L Gilbert
Dinner for 2 at International Casino - Mr T Bell
£50 Voucher donated by Marks & Spencer - Mrs C Piri
Cosmetics hamper donated by SM Seruya - Mr Truman Davies
A night at a four star hotel donated by Elite Travel was also
raffled on the night. This was won by Mrs Petfield. We would like to
thank all of the above for the wonderful prizes as well as
Gibtelecom who gave us Reload cards for all the prize winners. A
word of thanks also to Gibflora, Lewis Stangnetto Ltd, and Karina of
the Interational Casino for all her help.
Last but not least all of our family and friends who have again
supposted this worthy cause by selling so many tickets and joining
us on the night.
Jennie and Gillane
Cancer Research UK
No Joint Use on Our Airport
Regarding the joint use of the airport, Caruana you are wrong, you
should have never agreed to that.
The airport is British and used by the English and Commonwealth
planes, and Spain has nothing to do with it. Caruana, that is what
you have to tell Spain once and for all and finish the argument. Our
airport should be called 'Gibraltar & Commonwealth Airport'
To the Chief Minister, I say:
What are you trying to hide, Mr Caruana? Why didn't you want the
'Voice of Gibraltar' to be in attendance at the Tripatite talks?
Remember that we demand a referendum before you accept any
agreement. We don't trust Spain.
This annex is 28-storeys high!
The Eliott hotel is applying for permission to erect an annex on the
existing car park in Cannon Lane.
The word annex is a misnomer as the proposed construction is Twenty
Eight storeys high. Indeed is any consruction justified as the hotel
industry is constantly complaining about low occupancy rates?
Notwithstanding the lack of infrastructure, the possible
environmental effect, loss of views etc. do we really need this
monstrosity to be erected in the centre of the city?
It is to be hoped that the planning authorities will reject this
application out of hand.
In view of recent letters to the editor, as well as comments from
Action for Housing, I would like to add my plight to that of fellow
Gibraltarians who are suffering the effect of an inadequate
government policy in relation to housing. In relation to families on
the Social A or Medical lists, why are these people made to wait for
over a year to be allocated a dwelling, when there are many vacant
flats all over Gibraltar? If these cases have been awarded this
category it means that it’s a crucial matter and should be dealt
In many cases flats have been handed back to Government and are
still uninhabited after many months, even years. Government say that
these flats are in need of repair. Do we know whether any one is
looking at these properties or making any arrangements to have them
repaired? We believe not. We also know of cases where in our
“utopian” society people report themselves as homeless and are
sleeping in their cars. Yet Government don’t look for a solution,
they just say you have to be patient and wait, this is totally
unacceptable, specially knowing that there are vacant flats all
around Gibraltar! Yet, in cases like Rosia Court, Government has the
audacity to keep people waiting for months before making the tender
results public, all of this whilst young people are suffering the
hardship of not having a home, the people of Gibraltar are being
treated with disrespect by their own government.
We now hear of a new Housing points system that is to be introduced.
This at first hand might seem commendable, but the reality is that
they might as well give everyone 1,000,000 extra points. If there
are no houses available now there won’t be any under a new points
scheme. It is just a gimmick (smokescreen) to make us believe that
something is being done.
Thanks to the hard efforts of one woman, we in Gibraltar are
fortunate to have a halfway house for women in need of shelter
(domestic violence). Nonetheless, Government takes the attitude of
saying that at least these people have a roof over their heads and
can wait a bit longer. The house is at times full to capacity with
women and their children, who despite their hardships are not
afforded any dignity from the part of Government.
Government needs to change its attitude towards its citizens, who
they are treating with contempt. The current system does not work
for the public, its staff or even the Government’s reputation.
Half Way House
Women In Need
No. 4 route is "too long"
The route of the No. 4 bus is too long. The No. 3 bus has a direct
route. This is the bus which should cover the two bus stops at the
Alameda Estate (Humphreys).
Pensioners say Thank You
On behalf of the pensioners of the Gibraltar Pensioners Association
I congratulate and thank the Chief Minister and Government for the
following measures which were introduced in connection with the
Budget and which will go a long way towards assisting our senior
(a) The increase of the Senior Citizens tax allowances (personal and
wife) to £10,000 irrespective of level of income (men aged 65 or
over and women aged 60 or over).
(b) Increase the Disability Allowance
(c) Free medical tests for driving licences for those over the age
(d) Free T.V. licences for the registered tenant or owner of a
property or the spose thereof, if over 65 years of age
(e) No Social Insurance Contributions by those who work and are over
the age of 65 or over for men and 60 or over for women.
(f) The increase of the Elderly Persons minimun Income, which is
increased for both men and women
We now look foward to Government giving consideration to other
measures, which have raised. These include Free Bus service for
Senior Citizens: The re- introduction of the Widows and Orphans
Pension Scheme for those who opted out of the scheme 50% reduction
for motor vehicle licences for those over the age of 70: and
abolishment of means testing for elderly sponsored patients
undergoing treatment outside Gibraltar.
Henry J Smart
RESHUFFLE: New face on a tired
government, says GGR
Whilst the Chief Minister may attempt to put a new face on a tired
Government, the only thing he is achieving is highlighting how out
of touch he is withthe facts as they are lived by ordinary
Whilst Mr Caruana aims to paint a prettier picture of his
Government, we feel sorry for Bernard Linares who has now been
landed with yet one more wet attempt at political cosmetic surgery
so as to help his boss look pleasant to minorities.
The so-called “Minorities Portfolio” is doomed from the start
because where there is no political will to really bring in the
changes in legislation, policies and procedures no amount of
continuing cheap spin will succeed in hiding the facts.
As Chairman of an Equality NGO, it is my responsibility to tell it
like it is. Time will tell, but all that Bernard Linares will likely
be doing with this is telling us eventually that the important
project of setting up the Equal Opportunities Commission required by
the Equal Opportunities Ordinance will in reality just be a desk and
a chair somewhere in the back of the Citizens’ Advice Bureau or the
Ombudsman’s Office. Meanwhile issues of equality which can only be
tackled by new laws will continue to be totally ignored! And it will
be business as usual for discrimination, marginalisation and
Evidence of the cosmetic nature of this latest attempt to pull the
wool over the public’s eyes is the actual location of the Minorities
portfolio: in Education and Training. Neither the disabled, nor gay
people nor any other disadvantaged citizens in Gibraltar need to be
part of an education or training Ministry: what they need is an end
to discrimination in the provision of goods and services, an end to
discrimination in Government housing, an end to not being able to
enter into officially-recognised partnerships, an end, in effect, to
all inequalities as citizens.
Any serious and informed Chief Minister or Government would know
this and realise that such work should be undertaken not as some
entertaining little portfolio in a minor Ministry but as a core part
of a Social Affairs Minister’s work. And that is where the evidence
of this Government’s being totally out of touch with realities comes
in: it is not good enough today to shunt social justice issues of
this sort into “minorities” sidelines, however convenient it may be
for an unenthusiastic Government.
In modern European democracies, the rights of citizens are in the
mainstream of social policy! Once more, Government is attempting to
solve its deficiencies with spin and more spin – but this time
providing real evidence of just how out of touch it is with the
needs of citizens and with modern political and social practice.
Once again we would like to applaud the improvement of the Buildings
and Works Department. They are to be commended for their attitude,
approach, effort and spiritness to work.
We reported and complained to Mr Barea Project Manager the fact that
an elderly citizen of more than seventy years of age, having
difficulties in coming up and down the stairs within the landing of
the block, for which she suffered an accident. The reaction of Mr
Barea has been excellent, for which this means that after one week
four verandas have been installed within the common staircase for
the tenant, to enable her to hold herself.
If the Buildings and Works Department continue with their present
spirit we have no doubt that things will get even better. This goes
to show that there has been improvement across the board from
management right down to the workforce.
Chairman Julio Pons
Member of the committee Jessica Collado
Caruana's Govt 'an anachronism'
Equality Rights group GGR welcomes the passing of new Spanish
legislation which allows for gay and lesbian people to marry. Whilst
GGR is not so insistent on the actual word “marriage”, we are no
less so with regards to the need for Gibraltar to give full equality
to Gibraltarians of diverse sexuality in all the fields that matter
in citizenship. There can be no justice while discrimination
continues to be enshrined in our laws and politics and GGR will
continue to highlight this fact.
Mr Caruana’s evident insistence on doing absolutely nothing to
advance the rights of sexual minorities puts him in a position
similar to that of Spanish ex-President Aznar, who himself held
exactly the same view: that is, say nothing, do nothing. This tactic
aims to hold back progress in this area but all it achieves is to
undermine the social and political credibility of the Government and
its Party. Members of the GSD should realise this is the case from
the fact that, as an NGO, GGR has, after almost 5 years of patience,
been forced into open confrontation and opposition with this present
Government, a position we will continue to develop in the run-up to
the next Elections. We therefore sincerely look forward to the day
when the anachronism of Government by Mr Caruana is replaced by a
Gibraltar Government that finally listens to people and is less
ruled by Chief Ministerial dogmas than by a sense of social justice!
Pool Presentation & Finals Night
The Gibraltar Pool Association will be holding its presentation and
finals night at the Cormorant Boat Owner's Club this evening
This year's winners were:
Division 1 Winners : Cantina Owls
Division 1 Runners-Up : Duck & Firkin
Division 2 Winners : Red Devils
Division 2 Runners-Up : Catalan Bay
Division 2 Play-Off Winners : St Theresa's
Division 3 Winners : FEC Stars
Division 3 Runners-Up : Red Beavers
Division 3 Play-Off Winners : Astoria
Men's Ranking Winner : Julian McGrail
Ladies' Ranking Winner : Val Trotter
Best player (Men's Team) : Kevin Dalli
Best player (Ladies' Team) : Louise Galliano
The Gibraltar Doubles Final and Singles Final and will be played as
Doubles (starting at 7.00pm) Sean Galligan & Les Moore vs Nick
O'Hanlon & Craig Finch. Singles Final (starting at 8.00pm) Roger
Morello vs Nick O'Hanlon . All GPA members are invited to attend the
end of season presentation night, good food and music will be
Not a single brick in ten years
I saw the interview with Mr Caruana on GBC's Viewpoint, and seeing
as I was unable to ask him any questions I would like to express the
following. Perhaps Mr Caruana may even take the time to reply.
Housing is a fundamental social and moral right, yet Government has
not placed a single brick for the benefit of local housing in the
last 10 years.
With Rosia Court we have been waiting for the tender results since
29th March 2005. On the other hand, some Upper Town properties have
a problem in that mortgages are not available for them due to the
decrepit state that they are in.
With the Sands, government assured us that these would be in the
public domain by Feb 05, yet again, to date we have nothing. There
will be some 550 flats at the Sands 150 of which will be for the
elderly, so 400 will be for first time buyers. Between the housing
waiting list and the pre housing waiting list there are some 2,000
people, this means that we need five housing projects equivalent to
the sands merely to fulfil our current housing needs.
Between the dire housing situation and the rising costs of services
such as electricity & water young people are being forced to live in
Spain, something that is outrageous and disgraceful.
Previously Government has stated that they had been delayed in
building new houses because they had more important issues to attend
to, I ask you what more important issues does the minister for
housing have, other than housing?
On Viewpoint I was shocked to hear the Chief Minister state that
they had delayed the construction of new houses to benefit existing
homeowners in allowing the value of their properties to increase. I
am appalled and offended that young married couples (and others)
have nowhere to live merely so that people who purchased flats for
£40,000 (and less) can now sell these for £180,000 (or more), this
is an insult and scandalous.
Mr Caruana also stated that much money had been spent on the
refurbishment of government housing and lift installations. Seeing
as I have not been afforded my right as a Gibraltarian to having a
house for the benefit of profits for Gib V and Westside residents,
as well as lifts for government tenants, I ask Mr Caruana for an
undertaking that if my wife and I take up sleeping in one of these
brand new lifts we will not be arrested for squatting! Not much of
an ambition or privacy, but at least a place of our own, one for
which we have had to endure much sacrifice simply for the benefit of
Mr Caruana we hear many promises but we see nothing. What is
government's plan and how do they intend to repair the damage they
have caused and build some 2,000 flats within a somehow tolerable
period of time, ironically to alleviate a problem that has been
intolerable for the last 8 years.
Leslie M P Bruzon
The mass demonstration organised by the Unions, must be fully
supported by all sectors of Gibraltar, as it affects not only jobs
and conditions of MOD workers, but also has a social and economic
We must all fight together to reverse the MOD contractorisation
TGWU/ACTS and Prospect shop stewards are actively involved in the
collection of signatures for the petition that will be handed to the
Governor at the Convent by the Unions on Wednesday 29th June at the
end of the demonstration. The petition will indicate our objection
to the MOD's bulldozing of their contractorisation plans, which will
result in nearly 300 loyal employees of the British Crown, being
turned into cheap labour and the loss of their hard won rights,
arising from the Parity Agreement with the MOD. This unequivocal
message will be sent to the British Government and will leave no
doubt about the Gibraltar position, regarding the Privatisation
Further, the Unions are not only fighting this battle locally, the
TGWU/ACTS and Prospect in UK are also fully supporting. This was
made clear last week when the District Officer Luis Montiel and the
Branch Officer Charles Sisarello, attended a meeting with the
TGWU/ACTS Deputy General Secretary Bro. Jack Dromey and National
Officer Peter Allenson.
We must also state that this demonstration has no linkage whatsoever
with the legal case now in motion. The judge must be free from any
pressure when he arrives at a decision. The independence of the
legal system must be maintained at all times.
Finally, we once again call for the support of everyone for the mass
demonstration and the petition.
The Reform Party notes "with cynicism" the news of the location of
the next round of talks under the Trilateral Dialogue Forum. The
talks in July are to be hosted by Gibraltar, whose turn it is.
However, bexause of objections from Spain the discussions can not
actually be held here. Our Government has therefore felt obliged to
make arrangements for this round to be held in Faro, Portugal.
This is a humiliation for Gibraltar. Not only that, but it exposes
quite clearly the true lack of goodwill by the Spanish Government.
In reality, they obviously care nothing about the high-flown
principles they claimed when entering the talks process in the first
I refer to the Hon S Linares letter appearing in your edition on 23
June 2005. Whatever form he may be referring to I can reassure him
that it is not an official form. I can only re-iterate what I have
already said, which is that Charities do not have to pay anything to
set up stalls of any type.
If the Hon S Linares still does not accept what I am saying as the
official responsible for the Fair, I am afraid I simply cannot do
anything else except state that events will speak for themselves.