Land, Beauty And Legality: Antoci Returns To Salento, On The Front Line Against The Mafia

SALENTO – He fought the “rich, powerful and violent land mafia”. The national protocol, considered one of the cornerstones of the new anti-mafia code, which has fully implemented it after its application on a regional basis in Sicily, bears his name. Joseph Antocihonorary president of the Caponnetto Foundation and former president of the Nebrodi Park, despite the raising of the protection regime to which he is subjected to the highest level, returns to Salento to meet students and citizens.

After participating in the Green Night 2017, the association Home of Agriculture Tullia and Gino of Castiglione d’Otranto is hosting it this time as part of its social anti-mafia project “It’s day,” supported by the public announcement “Beauty and legality for a Puglia free from mafias” of the Puglia Region.

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Antoci’s events in Salento underpin the reflection on the theme of the commitment to fighting organized crime in the week that opened with the arrest in Palermo, after thirty years on the run, of Matthew Messina MoneyCosa Nostra’s scarlet primrose, one of the instigators of the massacres that bloodied the history of Italy between 1992 and 1993.

After the meeting on Thursday organized by the Municipality of Melpignano (of which he is an hourly citizen) with the students of the local comprehensive school, on the morning of Friday 20 January Antoci will dialogue with the students of theIiss Technical Polo of the Mediterranean “A. Moro” of Santa Cesarea Terme at Poggiardo headquarters. The Institute for Tourist Reception Services and Food and Wine is a strategic partner of the “È fatto giorno” project: for the entire school year, over 50 students are involved in the creation of theoretical/practical workshops related to the ethics of food, to care for the earth, to fight against crime. After the greetings of the manager Paolo Aprile and Annatonia Margiotta, an official of the Puglia Region and rup of “Beauty and legality for a Puglia free from the mafia”, Antoci will answer the questions of the vice president of Casa delle Agriculture, Giovanna Nuzzo, and of the students themselves.

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In the afternoon of 20 January, at 5.30 pm, the appointment will be held open to the public. The auditorium of the San Francesco oratory in via del Mare, ad They will gowill host the event “Land, beauty, legality“: will be the pupils of the lower secondary school of theComprehensive Institute of Andrano – among the protagonists of “È fatto giorno” so much so that an important part of the project is dedicated to them – to ask Antoci questions and reflections. The works will be opened by readings by the young people of Casa delle Agriculture and greetings by the mayor Salvatore Musarò and the headteacher Ivano De Luca. Then, the dialogue with Antoci, “a hero of our times”, as defined by Andrea Camilleri.

The commitment of Giuseppe Antoci

He has been living under guard for years and the personal security measures for him and all his family members have recently been made even more stringent. “They didn’t want to kill Peppe Antoci but when my relatives leave at 41 bis they kill him”: these are the new death threats on his head, after the ambush suffered in 2016 when only the intervention of the men of his escort and the armored car allowed him to be spared.

Giuseppe Antoci, as president of the Nebrodi Park between 2013 and 2018, hit the clans where it was necessary: ​​in their wealth, in the easiest to accumulate, today’s treasury made up of public money and funding. With its anti-mafia protocol adopted first by the 24 Municipalities of the Nebrodi Park, then by the whole of Sicily and, since 2017, extended to all the other regions, the enormous business deriving from scams on agricultural supplies to the detriment of the European Union, more profitable and less risky than other businesses. To set them up, the criminal consortia used abandoned land and state-owned pastures in Sicily and in various unthinkable areas of Italy, setting up fictitious companies registered in front of nominees and family members without criminal records, a way to circumvent the anti-mafia legislation. The “Antoci Protocol” had the merit of shining a light on the great flaw in the system by providing the tool to deal with it: it introduced the obligation to request anti-mafia information in the case of concession of state-owned agricultural land and not aimed at obtaining public subsidies . Previously, under the value threshold of 150 thousand euros, this check was not required. The investigations into the Nebrodi operation revealed the superfine organization of the clans, which could count on the complicity of public officials and professionals. The maxi-trial of first instance, concluded last autumn, led to 91 convictions (out of 101 defendants) for over 600 years in prison and the seizure of assets for 4 million euros. In those same days, after the new threats, it became necessary to raise to level I – reserved for very few personalities in Italy – the protection regime for Antoci, who even in his current role as honorary president of the Caponnetto Foundation continues to tirelessly promote the values of legality and civic engagement.

The project “It’s daytime”

For its title, the project borrows a verse from Rocco Scotellaro, his poetic proclamation of entry into history by those perceived as excluded. Winning result, with a high merit score, of the tender “Beauty and legality for a mafia-free Puglia”, funded by Por Puglia 2014-2020, “It’s daytime” is the program through which, since last March, Casa delle Agriculture Tullia and Gino, in collaboration with a vast partnership, has been working to strengthen the culture of legality, responsible citizenship and civil coexistence, through courses and workshops aimed at minors from 3 to 17 years old. Specific focuses are those dedicated to eco-mafias and agro-mafias, social inclusion practices, education for peace, respect for differences, environmental protection and social justice. With “It’s made day”, therefore, educational alliances are being strengthened between different institutional and social actors, on the territory and between different territories.

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Land, Beauty And Legality: Antoci Returns To Salento, On The Front Line Against The Mafia – Corriere Salentino Lecce