[LIVE] PN at Floriana, the final mass-meeting

Follow us on our live-blog for updates on PN's final mass meeting at the Granaries in Floriana.

Welcome to our live-blog of the Nationalist Party's mass meeting from Floriana. REFRESH here for updates.

9:00pm Gonzi's emphatic speech ends....fireworks take off as he soaks in the crowd's cheers. Thanks for following us tonight and the for the duration of the campaign. Keep following us for the latest updates throughout the weekend.

8:58pm We believe in you and in these hours "go find me two other voters, and I promise that on Saturday we will vote and on Sunday we will celebrate a victory for the country and your family's benefit. For you, for your children and for your country."

8:55pm He tells young people that they deserve to live in a country which guarantees their future and only a PN government could do so. "If you want to wake up on Monday morning in a country which remains on track, I ask you to persuade two people to vote PN. You already answered to this call on Sunday and we saw a wave of support come our way." He adds that he was approached by people who convinced more than two persons and persons who convinced voters who voted Labour in 2008.

8:48pm "In the next two days we will work hard to make sure that come Monday morning the country does not change direction." Turning to pensioners and the elderly, Gonzi says that a new PN government is committed to maintain and strengthen pensions and care services. He adds that the elderly will also be voting on the country's future. "Make the decision which suits your families best."Addressing parents, he says "who will you trust your children's and family's future to. You will not vote for a missed transfer or a permit but you will vote for your children which come above anything else. Choose who gave your children the best education." 

8:45pm "I trust the country's future in your hands and I am sure you will trust the country in the PN's hands." Gonzi adds that a vote for Labour is a vote for unemployment while a vote for the PN is a vote for jobs.

"48 hours are left. Our job is not over. Every hour, every hour, every minute is vital. We will not rest and we will work for every vote. Time is golden and we need to up the efforts. Go and explain to other people that we brought tranquillity to the country at a time when other countries went through such a tough time. We are ready to sacrifice popularity to do what is right for the country. We would rather lose popularity and see people in employment. We want what is best for you. We will work for it and we will deliver what is best for you."

8:40pm Reminding the suffering which young people experienced in Tunisia, Libya and Egypt in their struggles for democracy, Gonzi tells first-time voters that they are privileged to be able to vote for the country's future and says "come join us, come join our pursuit for a quality leap, in education, jobs and health."

8:38pm Gonzi calls on disappointed voters to put the country's interests first and says that "personal interests and hurts are important and I repeat our commitment to work as hard as ever to bring a culture change in the way people are treated, in the way how people are told whether they are right or wrong. I appeal, we will try and solve your problem, but on Saturday we risk losing all we have achieved."

8:34pm Gonzi says the PN is ready to continue struggling to achieve better results. "The fateful day is with us. You will have the country's future in your hands for five seconds. Each and every one of you will decide who will run the country in the next five years. For those of you who are still undecided, just imagine what would have happened in the last five years if Labour was at the helm. Just imagine what would have happened if Joseph Muscat was Prime Minister during the last five years. However the PN was in government, and results were only achieved because the PN was in power."

8:31pm "In your eyes I can see the will to succeed, the will to see the country succeed, I see the national pride in your eyes, I am proud to be Maltese, I see the sense of social justice, the love for the family, I see the love for the environment in the children's eyes."

8:28pm Gonzi says that in five years time the country needs to have more students, more women in the labour market, more pensioners in work. "This means that we have to create new jobs. If re elected we will be there to create new jobs and make sure that the country's future is safe and secure.

8:25pm "We have weathered the storm and we have all turned up victorious." Gonzi adds that despite the positive announcements of further investments in Malta, other companies are about to lay off 60 persons. "I tell you, those 60m persons that the PN will be there to protect your jobs and to create new jobs. We have always been the party of jobs. Be careful, if you are offered to change direction, just say, thanks, but no thanks."

8:22pm Gonzi lists the number of students in various educational institutions, the number of workers in employment, the number of companies which invested in Malta, the records in tourism, the number of taxes reduced or removed and the achievements in the health sector.

Continuously addressing Fenech Adami, Gonzi adds that the PN was returning the country which “is not empty handed but with a handful of results and achievements.”

Addressing Nationalists, Labourites and non affiliated voters, Gonzi says, "Together we have made the country stronger, more beautiful and successful."

8:17pm Gonzi is now on stage, thanking Fenech Adami for his contribution to the country's history, highlighting Fenech Adami's vital role in Malta's EU membership which gave the Maltese wealth, jobs and helped it move forwards.  

8:15pm "I have always believed that the right is always victorious. I salute George Borg Olivier and Nerik Mizi and all the others who did so much for the country. This massive crowd needs to answer the country's call by voting and be making sure that the country votes for the PN. I am thankful for the privilege of addressing you, I still believe that this party is still capable of securing our future. Best of luck for the victory we are all awaiting."

8:12pm "I am confident that under the guidance of Lawrence Gonzi, the country has a safe and secure future."

8:10pm "The PN was, is and remains the party capable to govern the country, from one victory to another. 50 years ago we knew where we wanted to go and we are now satisfied at seeing our dream become a reality. I want to thank Lawrence Gonzi, in particular for the last five years in which he faced numerous difficulties, which he overcame. I thank him for leading the government for the last ten years, since I asked him to take over the country and the party."

8:08pm Fenech Adami, 79, soaks in the crowd's adulation and his legendary "Huti Maltin u Ghawdxin" greeting is met with the loudest cheer of the night. "I accepted to be here, on Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi's invitation because I want to thank you, the young people and the elderly like me, who I had the privilege to address 52 years ago."

8:06pm A beaming Prime Minister points towards the sky as he hails the "grand mass meeting" and introduces Eddie Fenech Adami. The crowd goes berserk. A truly emotional moment for PN supporters.

8:04pm Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi is now about to address the crowd. Still no sign of his predecessor, Eddie Fenech Adami. First its the National Anthem.  

8:03pm "I give you my word that we will be a government of the people, close to the people. I give you my word to be there for you after 9 March. Vote for wealth creation, vote for job creation, vote for education, vote for health, vote for the future of our young people. Vote for a safe and secure future."

7:58pm Reminding the crowd that tomorrow happens to be the 10th anniversary of the EU membership referendum. "Joseph Muscat was stamping his feet and campaigning against membership. He has not changed his stance, because now he wants to send Alfred Sant as an MEP. Shame on you."

7:55pm On Labour's endorsement by French President Francois Hollande, Busuttil says that Labour was persisting in dishing out bad advise, pointing out Hollande's difficulties in governing Europe's second biggest economy. "The election is not an adventure, not a gamble, but a decision which will form your future and your children's future."

7:55pm "When Labour was in government and changed the country's direction we crashed into a wall...are you ready to allow Labour to change the country's direction."

7:52pm We need to keep the same direction and the same captain, because our captain weathered the storm."

7:51pm Busuttil says he is proud to be Maltese and European,  and "proud to be part of the PN because the country always benefited from the PN's permanence in power." He tells the crowd that they should also be proud to be part of the PN. "The choice is whether to change direction or keep it. We are on the right track and despite the difficulties we faced, we took on the challenge and came out with a clean bill."

7:46pm Busuttil says the Granaries in Floriana are part and parcel of the country's history and the PN's history. He thanks the students and young people who respond to with a loud cry. Busuttil also thanks older PN supporters who "answered the call of (former PN leader and Prime Minister) George Borg Olivier who gave the country its independence." He also hails the "father of European Malta" Eddie Fenech Adami. This is met with loud chants of "Eddie, Eddie."

7:44pm Simon Busuttil is about to start his address. Still no sign of Edie Fenech Adami.

7:43pm Gonzi is now shaking hands with the adoring PN supporters as he walks down the catwalk with his wife.

7:38pm Its now Lawrence Gonzi's turn to be greeted with a deafening roar. The aerial shots of the crowd show a breathtaking  view as the crowd is giving Gonzi and his wife Kate a heroes' welcome.

7:35pm PN deputy leader Simon Busuttil is now on stage basking in the crowds adulation.

7:25pm The singers of the PN theme song Futur fis-Sod are now belting out the song together with the crowd.

7:19pm It seems all PN activists, officials and employees are backstage, some with their children. Revellers cannot stop partying...the festive mood which gripped the crowd is contagious, all party officials backstage seem to have a spring in their step.

7:11pm It's now time for the crowd's favourite...Modern Talking's 'We Take a Chance' which sends the crowd in a delirious mood.

7:09pm The PN anthem is now blasting out of the speakers, with thousands of PN faithful singing in unison.

7:04pm The meeting is expected to start shortly. However we have to go through the motions first...starting with the customary dreadful Independence festival songs, which have become staple mass meeting material. The aerial views of the crowd are pretty impressive. A cat walk has also been set up in front of the stage, bringing back memories of the 2008 mass meetings.

7:00pm Sorry there...having a few connection problems. PN strategist and minister Austin Gatt is all smiles backstage. Party officials seem to be in high spirits as they are watching the massive crowd on TV screens set up behind the stage. The crowd is eagerly expecting former PN leader and hero Eddie Fenech Adami to address the meeting

6:47pm Good evening! All is set for the PN's last mass meeting before this Saturday's election. Another mammoth crowd is present at Floriana. As the evening descends on the Granaries, the crowd is set alight by the festive mood. Flags, body paint, beer and flares are not only visible and audible, we can smell it from backstage.  


Fabian Psaila
Fih hero ukoll! dan xi President Emeritus hu, ta' Partit jew ta' poplu? Il-Kariga li jgorr minn liema fondi sostnuta, mill fondi tad-Dar Centrali jew mill fondi tal-Maltin Kollha? Nahseb din hi il-konferma li Eddie Fenech Adami QATT ma kien il-President tal-Maltin kollha u ghamel U WAQQA il-kariga u pozizzjoni ta' President ghal wahda patiggana LI ZGUR MA TIXRAQX LILL PAJJIZ EWROPEWimma aktar qrib ta xi Prsidente ta' xi Republika tal-Banana!