‘Our democracy is at stake’: Grech makes final appeal to undecided voters ahead of election

Grech urged supporters to give the Nationalist Party their seal of approval and vote for all PN candidates on their district 

Photo: James Bianch/MaltaToday
Photo: James Bianch/MaltaToday

Nationalist leader Bernard Grech made a final appeal to undecided voters ahead of election day next Saturday, warning that Malta’s democracy is a at stake.  

PN supporters filled up Pjazza San Ġorġ on Thursday, all waving their party flags while donning PN merch. As Grech entered the stage he waved to the crowd and signed a few flags from among the front-row of supporters.  

“We’ve arrived at the final activity of this election campaign. Thank you for coming to give your support, and a big thanks to all of you, in the quiet of their homes. We know you’re giving your support from there.” 

He reflected on the past five weeks, recalling meeting happy and angered supporters, as well as those worried about the present or future. “I understand you, and I’m here for you.” 

Grech said that the Nationalist Party proved itself throughout the campaign. “I gave you my word that we were prepared – and we were. We said we would publish detailed and serious costings, and that’s we did.” 

He turned to election day, describing it as a unique opportunity that comes every five years. “We have to decide whether we want to give more power to Robert Abela, as we did for the past 10 years, or strengthen the voice of all those who want better for Malta.” 

Grech then turned his guns on Robert Abela, going blow-by-blow through the election controversies that came out in the past week. 

“Robert Abela told us he needed €28,000 a month because he used to work on weekends. Now, we found out that beyond all that money, he took €80,000 more because he worked during the weekend.” 

Then he mentioned Robert Abela’s ODZ (outside development zone) villa in Żejtun, which Grech said Abela paid half-price for. Beyond this, Abela then rented the villa out to wealthy Russian IIP applicants. “There’s a law for you, and another for gods.” 

He turned to more recent controversies. He mentioned that several prisoners were allowed to vote in the election when their name wasn’t supposed to appear on the electoral register.  

Grech then turned to a recent decision taken by Junior College to change entry requirements into the school. Students will need six O levels to enter Junior College, with at least one of the subjects being Mathematics, English or Maltese. 

“He threw away the Maltese language. He threw away his language, our language.” 

He hit out at the Prime Minister for refusing interviews with the independent press through the election campaign.  

“Our country is calling us again. We’d be careless not to realise that our democracy is at stake. In the last nine years we had an almost total collapse of the institutions in our country. Don’t let anyone discourage you. This is your hour.” 

He encouraged supporters to vote for all PN candidates on their ballot, while handing their first-preference vote to whichever PN candidate they see fit. “We have the largest number of candidates, the highest number of women. We have a diverse team.” 

Grech added that the PN developed crucial sectors like financial services, iGaming, and maritime industries. He recalled the PN’s flagship proposal to create 10 new sectors if elected into government. 

“On Saturday we will have the only survey that matters,” Grech said, urging voters to give the PN their seal of approval on the ballot. “Now is the time to show government that you will not let them treat you so arrogantly.” 

He said that he joined the Nationalist Party to offer supports an alternative. “I joined to give you an alternative, and that’s what I did. […] I’m nothing without your energy. I’m nothing without your vote on Saturday.” 

Grech called on supporters to encourage their friends and family to vote for the Nationalist Party, especially if they are still undecided on their vote. “I need you to convince everyone you know. Find someone, speak to them nicely with genuine interest, tell them about our vision.” 

Martina Caruana, who leads political research in the PN, was first to the podium before Grech. She insisted that the PN will not turn a blind eye to injustice, and urged supporters to vote for “justice and rule of law” on election day. She added that the Nationalist Party will work towards strengthening press freedom, and went on to commemorate murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. 

“Thank you Bernard Grech for teaching me what I means to be a leader - that a real leader leads with love and empathy.” 

Secretary-general Michael Piccinino said that the environment will be a priority for the Nationalist Party. He added that the PN not only published its manifesto costings, but also outlined its economic plan for 2030.  

He too made an appeal to undecided voters. “Don’t let this opportunity pass. Your vote is the key to moving the country forward.” He urged them to look at the PN’s vision and speak to the party about their aspirations for the future. “Yes, your aspirations are the aspirations of the Nationalist Party.”