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MT 8 May 2016

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maltatoday, SUNDAY, 8 MAY 2016 9 News Gzira housing estate residents up in arms over noisy neighbour Restaurant operating without the necessary permits giving residents sleepless nights JURGEN BALZAN RESIDENTS of the Gzira housing estate are at the end of their tether because of the lack of action against a bar situated within the complex, where rowdy patrons are being blamed for an interminable list of inconveniences. "We are being completely ig- nored by the authorities, for years we have complained about the noise, the vandalism, the trash and various other inconveniences. We have raised the matter with the po- lice, the local council, the housing authority and many others but our complaints have fallen on deaf ears and we do not know who to turn to," a resident told MaltaToday. MaltaToday is informed that the establishment, Good Thaimes, previously known as Mille Miglia Snack Bar, is rented out to a Mal- tese man. However, the property is sub-let to a German man, Ferry Jehle who operates a bar-cum-Thai restaurant with residents living in the floor above and next door. The establishment – at Block 3 Shop A, Mille Miglia, Gzira Road – serves a wide variety of beers and Thai food, with specialties includ- ing pineapple fried rice and greens and curries. Yet, while there is no Malta Tourism Authority licence issued to Good Thaimes, the au- thority informed MaltaToday that Mille Miglia is licensed as a bar and has specific conditions that it can only sell sweets and snacks, cheese- cakes, pies and pizza. The licensee is Antonio Zammit. "We have raised this issue with various authorities. The original permit was for a snack bar and a cafeteria but never for a bar and restaurant. We are not talking about a bar in a residential area, this is a bar within a housing estate. Moreover, we have tried to obtain information on whether it is legal to sub-let the premises to a third party. But the authorities have so far refused to answer our queries," a resident said. The Housing Authority told Mal- taToday that it is not the owner of the property and there was no re- cord of any sale or rent of the estab- lishment in its records. The authority claimed that the government property division (GDP) is responsible for the Gzira housing estate. Questions sent to the GDP more than two weeks ago have been answered but did not reach MaltaToday as these are awaiting the approval of the parlia- mentary secretariat for planning, headed by Deborah Schembri. Residents have signed a petition requesting the authorities to inter- vene but so far no enforcement ac- tion has been taken. "We have families, young and old people and sick people living here, yet the bar owner acts with impu- nity as if he is above the law. We have to suffer the loud music on Sunday afternoons and in the early hours on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The police have come on a num- ber of occasions but after leaving the scene the noise starts again," another resident said. A number of police reports have been filed about the bar – a popular spot for foreign and Maltese people employed in the online betting in- dustry – with residents complain- ing of rowdy behaviour, vandalism to their property and cars, lewd acts in public, fights and blocked access. "When it gets crowded we can- not drive through to get inside the estate and on some occasions we have to deal with drunk people who refuse to make way and who are rude and aggressive," a resident said. The residents have a collection of photos and videos of people blocking access to the estate, men urinating on their doorsteps and empty beer bottles and other trash on cars and in the street. Last year, the bar made it into the news after police and MTA offi- cials had requested the removal of a wooden cowboy and large wagon wheel benches, because they lacked the necessary permits. Ferry Jehle had complained that the residents and the police were "ganging" up on him, however, the residents who contacted MaltaTo- day said that it was they who were getting the short end of the stick. "We are the victims of the au- thorities' unwillingness to act and the bar owner will not buy our si- lence," a frustrated resident told MaltaToday. The bar and Thai restaurant is situated in the housing estate, with residents living in the floor above, and next door A patron was snatched urinating outside the bar on cars and property owned by residents

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