Time to consider a Gozo-Malta bridge

Edwin Calleja (The Sunday Times, November 21) may have been shocked and even disturbed by the idea of a bridge linking Gozo with Malta, but has he ever lived in Gozo? And I do not mean for a week’s holiday, but all year round.

Had he written this letter many years ago, I would probably have agreed with him, but definitely not now, for various reasons.

Mr Calleja wants to help preserve our magnificent island and even more, our future generations. But what does he mean by future generations? Are they today’s Gozitan children growing up or the Maltese who want to continue having an idyllic and peaceful holiday destination?

It seems that Mr Calleja enjoys the ferry crossing. But has he ever had to do it every single day, rain or shine, to get to work? Or in force 7 or 8 winds trying desperately to get to his workplace in time? Has Mr Calleja ever had to see his children, aged only 18, having to leave home every Sunday night and return on Friday because they have to be in Malta to receive their higher education and cannot afford to cross over every day? And this is not just for a week but for four to five years if not more.

I think Mr Calleja needs to understand what we Gozitans go through every single day. If nothing is done, and soon, Gozo will be losing its young people because the island lacks job opportunities. After completing their higher education, very few young Gozitans are returning home and we cannot blame them.

Gozo does not have a bright future at all and at this rate, in the very near future, its population is bound to decline considerably.

The only thing Gozo would be ideal for then is a peaceful holiday or as a lovely place for a large old people’s home as the average age of people living here will definitely go up.

Bridges have been built all around the world and identities have been kept; this can be done in Gozo too.

Mr Calleja wants to dump the idea of a bridge but before dumping anything, I suggest one has to see what we Gozitans really need... Maybe it is about time that everyone concerned starts looking into this matter seriously.

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