The Malta Labour Party’s spokesmen on social solidarity and the elderly yesterday claimed that five people residing at the St Vincent de Paule home for the elderly died of heat strain within two days as the wards they were living in either had faulty air conditioning or none at all.
In a press statement issued yesterday evening by Opposition MPs Marie Louise Coleiro Preca and Silvio Parnis, the Labour spokesmen said relatives of people residing at St Vincent de Paule had to provide them with fans during last month’s record heat wave, amid “persistent rumours that five elderly people died of heat strain and another two were dying because of that.”
Contacted yesterday evening, Parliamentary Secretary for the Elderly Helen D’Amato would not comment about the alleged death of five persons, saying she would reply to the Labour statement only once she had it in writing. She had not yet replied by the time we went to print.
The MLP spokesmen chided the government for leaving elderly people without basic facilities despite the fact that they pay up to 80 per cent of their pension, 60 per cent of their bank interests and 5.5 per cent of the value of their property.
Coleiro Preca and Parnis added that people residing in another state-run home for the elderly, in Mosta, were also suffering from unkept promises – namely to provide them with mini fridges in their rooms and to repair their television which was only receiving PBS.