[WATCH] Freedom Day still relevant as Malta fights to free itself from Covid-19 - Prime Minister

As Malta is due to celebrate Freedom Day on Tuesday, the island is fighting to free itself from the coronavirus pandemic, Robert Abela says

Prime Minister Robert Abela
Prime Minister Robert Abela

Freedom Day, due to be celebrated tomorrow, bears a similarity to the island’s fight to free itself from the Covid-19 pandemic, the Prime Minister said.

In a brief address on One TV on Monday, on the occasion of the 41st anniverary of Freedom Day, Robert Abela said that the drive to "free" Malta was still relevant today, albeit within a different context where the country is facing the coronavirus pandemic together with the rest of the world.

The annual feast - which is celebrated on 31 March and marks the withdrawal of British troops and the Royal Navy from Malta in 1979 - usually features various activities, such as the traditional regatta race. Measures put in place to prevent the spread of the virus will prevent these from taking place this year, however.

Earlier today, the government announced bans on gatherings of more than three people, with the police empowered to impose fines of €100 for those not abiding by the rules.

Abela emphasised the importance of confronting the challenges brought on by Covid-19 as a united people, with no regard for political creed.

“In these particular times which we and the rest of the world are facing, we must more and more set aside what divides us… there are no [party] colours right now,” he said.

“This is the modern Freedom Day we are fighting now - freedom from a pandemic… and, once we succeed in this, we can keep dreaming and achieving things for our country.”

Abela added that he was convinced that the country would emerge victorious from “this period of collective sacrifice.”