The Għaqda Regatta Nazzjonali and its affiliated clubs have issued a statement to announce that the traditional September 8 regatta has been cancelled after an agreement was reached between all participating clubs.
The local governing body of rowing said that the decision was taken after several attempts from the Għaqda Regatta Nazzjonali to communicate with the Health Authorities but each time their response was that they could never give any response.
“It is with regret that we announce that the traditional September 8 regatta has been cancelled following an agreement with all participants,” the local governing body said in a statement.
“This decision was taken after several attempts were made by the Għaqda Regatta Nazzjonali with the competent authorities but unfortunately the response it always received was that they couldn’t give us any form of an answer.
“In the case of the March 31 regatta, five days before the event we were informed from the television that our proposal was rejected. When a meeting was requested with the authorities this was never accepted.
“It seems that the Regatta Nazzjonali is not regarded as a sport from the Maltese Health Authorities as other sport is being given permission to be staged. One has to understand that for a race to be staged a lot of sacrifices and preparations are made from months before from volunteers.
“Although we provided all guarantees and protocols as requested by the sporting standards during the COVID-19 pandemic, and despite the backing from SportMalta, this sport which is practised in the Grand Harbour from athletes hailing from the southern part of Malta is not being given the importance it deserves.
“One, therefore, asks, why this injustice and whether there is a hidden agenda.
“The authorities can now boast that they have managed to stop one of the traditions that existed since World War II. In our opinion, this a stoppage that is not justified and reasoned.”