After Cesena, Sergio Mattarella arrives in Ravenna, the city where for several days the suburbs have been flooded by rivers and canals. "His presence here is the best thanks of the State," Ravenna Mayor Michele de Pascale told President Sergio Mattarella. "In addition to compensation, we ask for the necessary works to avoid the effects of climate change", added the mayor. De Pascale explained that 60 square kilometers were flooded, and that with the preventive evacuation about 32,000 people were removed from their homes. "We did everything possible with teamwork and a heroic spirit - said the mayor - Slovenia, Slovakia, France and Belgium also helped us. The water has returned to its banks, affecting many territories but saving the city". "You will return as before, your products are indispensable" he said Mattarella to a representative of Coldiretti who gave him some products from the Ravenna countryside affected by the flood two weeks ago. The head of state was given a basket with local fruit and oil: "We are affected but we react, we always work but we also need your help," said a young farmer. "I can well imagine the tension of those hours and days when there was no rest, no break. The effort must have been really immense. The climatic conditions are increasingly worrying and our country will have to worry about organizing preventive defenses for phenomena of this kind, more than has happened so far". This was said by the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, speaking from Ravenna." This is a territory of great importance for Italy, not only for its size, for the history for the liveliness of the urban fabric and agricultural districts. All this requires a quick, immediate restart, without pauses. Of course with the help of all the institutions starting from the central one, with the help already programmed by the government that is demanding and important. We must make sure that there are no feelings of surrender, of abandonment", said the head of state.
Mattarella in Cesena, volunteers give him the vest with the inscription 'tin bota'
Mattarella then reached Lugo di Romagna, another center that suffered major flooding two weeks ago. Welcomed by the mayor Davide Ranalli, as well as by the president of the province and mayor of Ravenna Michele de Pascale, Mattarella visited the 'Rossini' theater, which suffered damage due to water: 'It will return as before'.
Finally, the President of the Republic reaches Faenza, the last stage of his journey. In the hall of the city council await him, in tricolor band, the mayors of the territory. In addition to the mayor of Faenza, Massimo Isola, also Matteo Lepore, mayor of Bologna and Luca Vecchi, mayor of Reggio Emilia and president of ANCI regional Emilia-Romagna. In Faenza the Lamone flooded, on the night between 16 and 17 May, and the water entered the historic center, stopping a few tens of meters from the square. "You don't have to be afraid of being alone. You won't be." This was said by President Sergio Mattarella speaking to the mayors of Romagna from Faenza. The head of state added that he will work to ensure that "a full reconstruction is guaranteed".
The President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella arrived in Cesena to meet the volunteers, who at the Don Milani school set up a collection center for basic necessities for the victims of the flood. The president was welcomed by the mayor Enzo Lattuca and the president of the Region Stefano Bonaccini. Then he stopped to greet the children in the schoolyard, where a banner was displayed with the words 'I care', the motto of civic commitment dear to the prior of Barbiana to whom the school is dedicated. "I have no words to thank you. What you have done is of extraordinary importance, it is an example of solidarity and common commitment and generous availability". With these words the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella addressed some volunteers and rescue workers. One of them gave the head of state a uniform, an orange jacket: "This is a tribute, it's a protection for all of us and we want to share it with her," he said. The head of state was also given a yellow vest used by those who provide assistance, with the inscription 'tin bota', the encouragement in Romagna dialect that became the slogan of the resistance after the flood. The volunteers of the sorting center at the 'Don Milani' school in Cesena gave it to the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella: "His presence encourages us", they said.
Mattarella in Emilia-Romagna, applause and ovations in Forli': 'You will not be alone'
"All of Italy is close to you and you will not be alone in the reconstruction that must be fast". This was said by President Sergio Mattarella speaking from Forlì. "This is a square that has seen many important moments and this is a challenging and difficult moment. I have seen how much there is to resume with courage and commitment and I know that you will succeed because this is the will of these districts. All of Italy is close to you and you will not be alone in the reconstruction that must be fast. There is a need for it to be relaunched. It's a national need and you can be sure that there will be all the constant support." This was said by President Sergio Mattarella speaking from Forlì. "This is a challenging, difficult time. I have seen so many wounds of the territory. I know very well, with regard to many homes, many companies, roads, it is to be resumed with courage and decision to relaunch common life", Mattarella specified, speaking from Forlì.
Mattarella in Emilia-Romagna, first stop in Modigliana
Crowd bath for the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella who chose the small Modigliana as the first stop of his visit to Romagna, to witness the solidarity of the State to the flooded lands. In the village devastated by landslides, the Head of State walks the streets of the historic center together with the mayor Jader Dardi, who shows him the damaged areas in a tricolor band. During the tour through the streets of the town, Mattarella greeted citizens who gave him applause and ovations. Before arriving he had flown over the area.
President Mattarella donated a basket of saved fruit and vegetables - Emilia-Romagna
A basket with the products of Romagna agriculture saved from the flood, from salad to garlic, from radishes to artichokes, from cucumbers to asparagus was delivered by the farmers of Coldiretti in Piazza Saffi in Forli to the president of the Republic of ... (ANSA)
The President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella is in Piazza Saffi in Forlì for the first institutional meeting of his day in the areas of Romagna hit by floods and some children welcome him singing the anthem of these areas 'Romagna Mia'. School children with colorful hats wave tricolor flags, show signs and drawings that they have prepared to greet the Head of State. "Romagna mia" and "Tin bota" are some of the writings that return to the heart of Forlì, two weeks after the flood.
THE CONTROVERSY - "I am happy that the President of the Republic is today on the flooded places, as the whole government has done and as the Prime Minister has done twice. Too bad that today there is no one from the government to illustrate the critical issues to the Head of State, no one has been invited. It doesn't matter, the important thing is to get results." So the Minister of Civil Protection and Marine Policies, Nello Musumeci, to Rainews24. To those who asked him why in Emilia Romagna with Sergio Mattarella there is no representative of the government, Musumeci replied: "I do not know, he was not invited". "The President of the Republic in visits to Italian territories does not impose the presence of members of the government. Moreover, it is always appreciated by President Mattarella. It has always been like this, since the beginning of the first seven years". This is how the press adviser of the Quirinale Giovanni Grasso responds to those who ask him about the controversy of Minister Nello Musumeci on a failure to invite the government. "The Quirinale on such occasions has never made invitations. But if anyone wants to come, they are welcome."
The Head of State will reach the village of the Forlì Apennines where the mayor Jader Dardi and the citizens will await him, then he will be in Forlì, to meet the volunteers who worked in the emergency and the day will end in the afternoon with the mayors of the territory in Faenza, where the water of the Lamone has invaded various areas of the historic center, in the night between 16 and 17 May. But during the day there will be other stages and meetings with the population: probably Cesena, Lugo, Ravenna. " I think it is a beautiful message to the people and the populations because the President of the Republic enjoys esteem, respect, for all that he has been able to demonstrate and is demonstrating", said the President of the Emilia-Romagna Region, Stefano Bonaccini. "I have to thank him - he continued - last year on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the earthquake, coming to Medolla and then to Finale Emilia, in the two epicenters of the two tremors of 20 and 29 May he said 'Italy must be grateful to Emilia, to the Emilia-Romagna and its people for what they have shown'. We had an exemplary reconstruction and now we want to do the same thing."
Mattarella announced that he will donate the sum linked to the Paul VI Prize to the John XXIII Community, founded by Don Oreste Benzi in Rimini, and to its shelters affected by the floods. The visit of the President of the Republic comes after that of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, on May 21, and that of the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, on May 25. "For our community - says Dardi, mayor of Modigliana - it assumes a value of great importance for the rebirth and reconstruction of the infrastructure of our municipality.