Why are beach lawbreakers being protected?

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Previously we reported that an ice cream kiosk was duly converted into a grill bar, within the seashore protection zone (where buildings are not allowed), but still operating as a restaurant for more than one year, despite our complaints to the authorities.

Certainly, the operator is “protected” by Paralimni Municipality and we have got written replies on the subject by the various authorities that indeed the restaurant is operating without a license.

The District Officer, Ministry of Tourism and even the Electricity Authority admit that the operator is provided by the Municipality illegally with public electricity.

This is one example among many which provoked us to ask: “Who Governs Cyprus?”.

So, on this subject we have taken the following action:

  • We applied to the Council of Ministers (since the kiosk/grill bar is built on Governmental land) in order to examine under what terms the Government has given the land to the Municipality to develop as it likes and why Paralimni Municipality provides such an obvious illegal permit/cover-up.
  • We wrote to the local Land Registry (to which the Council of Ministers has directed us to apply) and we are still waiting for a response.
  • The Ministry of Tourism has informed us that the grill bar/ex kiosk is operating without the relevant permits.
  • The District Officer informed us that notwithstanding his letters and reminders to the Municipality, the latter is not responding.
  • The Electricity Authority of Cyprus has informed us that the restaurant was provided with electricity by the Municipality, illegally and it will be dealing with it!!
  • No reply from Paralimni Municipality regarding public water supply, toilets/sanitary provision (which is a danger to public health) etc. How do we expect to get an answer for a cover-up since the Municipality is the prime suspect in the crime?
  • The kiosk organized a disco night and we reported this to the Police. The Police placed a fine on the young DJ but “they could not find the tenant of the building” (must be in New York), hence they got away with it and the “poor” young man had to bear all the cost/fine.
  • No access to the grill bar other than from a pedestrian/disabled access, which is duly used for the supply vehicles, as well as for parking (photos available).
  • We complained to the various commissioners of the Government, who are supposed to improve our standard of governance, but no reply – 1 year ago.
  • Two hotel apartment projects were operating. One, which is owned by a non- local who was refused a building permit (notwithstanding the securing of a planning permit) to convert it to apartments for sale and the other which belongs to a local was allowed and duly sold and operated as individual apartments for the last 2 years.
  • There are 7 containers within the Protaras beach, with no access, which are duly converted into “houses to let”. Having spoken to the Mayor he informed us that “he is taking legal action”.  The containers have been there for 5 years.  No access, no permits, no connection with the sewage system, no water, and no official electricity supply.  They belong to locals (some of whom threatened us).
  • A fully operational restaurant in the same Municipality, not only has no permit as such but placed additional wooden platforms (on which tables are placed) fully within the seashore protection zone where no buildings are allowed!!
  • We have many other illegalities to report including the construction of a road used extensively by the public (Ayios Elias area) and duly constructed by the Municipality – illegal with no remedy in case of accidents etc.

Who governs Cyprus?, the Government or the local Municipalities?

It appears that if you are a local you can “do as you like” with no permits necessary.

In the end, the commissioners for whom the Government boasted about, reneged in their duties and responsibilities to the public.