Tuesday, 25th October 2011
DECISION TO BOYCOTT EUROPA OPENING WAS TAKEN UNANIMOUSLY
• - says GONHS Council
Gibrtaltar ornithological and Natural History Group (GONHS) has said it rejects what it describes as Chief Minister Peter Caruana’s “vitriolic attack” on its decision to boycott the opening of Europa Point, and his accusing the former General Secretary Dr. John Cortes of pulling a ‘political stunt’.
Mr Caruana’s comments came after it became public that Dr Cortes had put his name forward as a prospective candidate for the GSLP at the forthcoming elections.
A GONHS spokesman said: “The decision (to boycott the opening), at which Dr. Cortes was not present, was taken unanimously by the GONHS Council, which declined the invitation. It was decided that in view of the reluctance of the developers of the site to take sound advice on landscaping using salt-resistant plants, and the destruction of an area where protected plant species grew, it could not endorse the official opening. “
“Furthermore, as the decision was ours, and not one individual’s, the accusation of placing ‘plants before people’ must be aimed at us and is blatantly incorrect. The GONHS prides itself in seeking an environment where the wellbeing and quality of life of the people of Gibraltar is not undermined by prospective developments that do not respect the natural environment.”
“We remain apolitical, and pride ourselves in working as an independent NGO, despite accusations from the Chief Minister.”
• See also a statement by Dr Cortes above.