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Llamas slams Govt over ‘deplorable’ St Martin’s portacabins

Independent MP Lawrence Llamas has lashed out at the Gibraltar Government over its “firefighting approach” to St Martin’s School.

Mr Llamas centred his criticism on portacabins at the entrance to the school which he had been told previously by Education Minister Dr John Cortes were toilets but which, in fact, are classrooms.

“Understandably, this has come as a shock to parents and carers who are not impressed, putting it mildly, at the firefighting approach this Government is displaying, with the added health and safety concerns playing on their minds,” Mr Llamas said in a statement.

“This Government has shown a total lack of planning and prioritisation since they were elected in 2011 and therefore are ultimately responsible for the situation the school is currently facing.”

“The Government can argue that they have been in consultation since they were elected in 2015, but it's simply not good enough, especially from a Government who has prioritised many multi-million pound projects such as No.6 costing £6.5m and the Small Boats Marina costing £25m.”

Mr Llamas noted that in 2012-13, the number of students at St Martin’s School stood at 48.
Since then, there has been a steady increase year on year with a sharp rise in the 2017-18 intake, which has risen 37.5% to 66 students.

“Delivering a new school should have been a priority,” he added.

“Instead, these children will have to be taught in the deplorable surroundings of porta-cabins placed on a small car park.”

“It is in my view, and the view of many others indefensible and shameful.”

“St Martin’s school is also in need of a new bus, the Government knows this and committed itself to providing it in last year’s Budget.”

“Nevertheless, a year on and there is still no bus and no mention of when this bus will be delivered.”

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