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The country has tracts of land that are Government properties and this includes houses in urban areas and agricultural spaces that have been neglected instead of being used for environmental projects. ‘Popolin’ spoke to the Executive Head of the Lands Authority, Robert Vella, to discuss the better efficiency and commitment of the Authority as well as to reply to various questions that were made.
Vella said the Government is the largest property owner in the country and it is calculated that more or less, 60% of the country’s property are under the direct responsibility of the Government and administered by the Lands Authority whose role is that of managing these properties in a thrifty manner. Many have a perception the Government does not actually know the total of properties it has, but this is not the case. Unfortunately some properties are not being used and this gives the impression the Government does not know of them. For this to be redressed the Lands Authority is launching various schemes so that where possible these lands are utilised by Government entities, or NGOs or even privately to prevent further damage to their structure, particularly where historic buildings are concerned.
Asked by the programme presenter how the Authority may improve its operations, Vella said the amount of properties makes a difference and the Authority has to improve its functions. He said that reforms are to be made with a strong investment in technology and human resource as well as for tangible efforts for the Authority to be closer to the public in a short period of time.