Delia’s defiance is damaging both PN and country, MPs who disavowed leader say

Group of 19 MPs and MEPs behind Delia’s lost confidence vote reiterate call for PN leader to step down in national interest

A group of rebel MPs have again urged Adrian Delia to step down to save party and country
A group of rebel MPs have again urged Adrian Delia to step down to save party and country

Updated at 9:08pm with statement from Adrian Delia

The 19 PN parliamentary group members who voted against Adrian Delia in this week’s confidence vote have again called on the embattled leader to step down, both in the national interest and in that of the party.

The 19 - 17 MPs and two MEPs, all members of the Nationalist parliamentary group - said every day Delia remained is his post was causing damage to the party and the country.

Delia, they said, had failed in fulfilling the mandate for which he was elected three years ago.

“Three years ago, Adrian Delia was given the mandate to lead the Nationalist Party, strengthen its structures, serve as a strong and credible opposition, and be prepared to win elections,” the group said on Friday.

“Despite this, three years later, the facts show that Adrian Delia was not successful in doing what he was entrusted to do.”

Delia’s position, they insisted, was no longer tenable for a number of reasons.

Amongst them is the fact that he did not manage to unite the section of the electorate which always supported the PN, and worse still, he was unsuccessful if convincing those voters who had stopped supporting the party. This, they said, was confirmed by the results of the European and local elections and surveys.

Moreover, the rebel MPs said that Delia had, with his attitude and decisions, caused “almost irreparable” division within the members and activists of the party.

He had also failed to overcome a large number of serious allegations which had been made in his regard and which put him in a position where he had to constantly defend himself. “The PN has often ended up being used to defend [his] personal situations.”

In light of this, the MPs insisted that Delia had to shoulder responsibility and quit as Opposition leader.

“The 19 PN parliamentary group members regretfully note that Adrian Delia continues to be hard-headed and keeps making the same mistakes which he has been making for the last three years, to the great detriment of the Nationalist Party and our country.”

It was in this spirit, and in the interest of the PN and the country, that the 19 declared Delia no longer enjoyed their trust.

The 19 parliamentary group members added that they had unanimously agreed that Therese Comodini Cachia be appointed Opposition leader as per the Constitution’s provisions.

Not appropriate to enter into political debate while President still deliberating - Delia

In a reaction issued on Friday night to the statement by the MPs, Delia said that he had already made his legal submission to the President, after being invited by him.

Remarking that the MPs who sent the statement "where still not known", Delia said that he felt it was not appropriate to enter into a political debate with his MPs while the President was still deliberating about this sensitive topic, and when his own MPs had not approached him directly.

Delia reaffirmed his loyalty to party members and towards observing the PN statute, adding that he would remain loyal to his oath of office.