Forty-seven executive committee members of the Nationalist Party expressed their no-confidence in Party Leader Adrian Delia. Thirty-five voted in his favour while one abstained.
The 84 members present were asked to vote on the question “Do you have confidence in Adrian Delia as leader of the Nationalist Party?”
The motion was forwarded by Former Birkirkara mayor and Nationalist Party executive member Michael Asciak. Delia strongly resisted that request, arguing that the vote was not on the agenda and that the party rule book did not allow it.
Adrian Delia insisted he will remain as party leader despite the vote, stating “Those who forwarded the motion knew that it wouldn’t result in anything.”
“This vote has no consequence”, he said. The Times reports “I’ve said it once, twice, three times. I will remain [as party leader] for as long as our people, which means our members, want me to.”
Delia said those who opposed him had pushed for the vote because they knew that the PN’s general council – the party’s highest organ – could not, under the terms of its new statute, hold another vote of confidence in his leadership. He also waved off suggestions that he should submit himself to a new party leadership contest open to party members, saying “ironically, members have made no such request”.
The Independent reports that Delia said he felt sorry for genuine Nationalists and the tesserati. “There are those within the party who have not yet learnt that if we do not respect the will of the majority, then we can never make any progress.”
Last week, 19 members of the PN’s parliamentary group also voted for Delia to resign.
MaltaToday reports that former PM Lawrence Gonzi, Tonio Borg and party secretary general Francis Zammit Dimech suggested Delia go to a vote among party members. The news portal said “those who voted against Delia believe the vote will lead to a snowball effect against Delia, but cannot understand how the PN leader cannot understand the implications of the vote.”
Newsbook.com.com.mt reports that late on Tuesday evening, former Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi had suggested that Adrian Delia calls for a vote of confidence among the members. Gonzi’s proposal seems to have been well received, prompting bangs and shouts of approval.
The party executive also approved the appointments of a new electoral, data and records commission, ethics and discipline commission and social media team for the party.
Meanwhile, Newsbook.com.mt reports MP Claudio Grech, who last week was touted as possible Leader of the Opposition, stating that everything happening needs to be in the best interest of PN and the country. He added that everyone has a role to play, and whichever role he or anyone fits in is secondary. The ultimate objective is to move forward, because “this country needs and deserves an opposition, and this can be delivered by the Nationalist Party”.
Grech also said he is ready to resign together with others to give space to new faces within the party.