Delia: Grech anointed by backers who never wanted PN unity

Adrian Delia says leadership rival Bernard Grech is backed by adversaries who simply want to oust democratically-elected leader

Adrian Delia
Adrian Delia

PN leadership candidate Adrian Delia has accused his rival Bernard Grech of kicking off his campaign on a “negative, critical note” after saying Delia had failed to unite the party.

Delia posted a Facebook message in which he took to task Grech, over statements he made in an interview with the Times where he said the PN had become more fragmented after Delia became leader in 2017.

“Maybe it’s his advisors from pre-2013 who don’t know otherwise,” Delia said in a clear reference to the presence of former PN leader and former prime minister Lawrence Gonzi as one of Grech’s advisors.

Delia has always styled himself as a political leader with no links to the party’s establishment, whose MPs have always been inimical to Delia’s leadership.

“I instead will share a friendly word of advice. Unity is what we both want. Sadly, not so those who anointed you, not so much for your healing powers, but simply to oust a democratically-elected leader they don’t control,” Delia said in another reference to the MPs who forced a new leadership election after two no-confidence votes.

“What tops it though is that you ponder whether I still have the party at heart! Well it’s a bit more than that actually. I gave this party everything I had and am. My career, my passion, my life. Everything. My heart and soul. But yes, let’s unite. Me, you and all those eager prospects which we were about to announce as being the next generation PN. And all those of goodwill, within and outside the PN that want you to join the cause but not on the reins of those behind you.”

In his interview to The Times, Gredch said he was ready to deliver the unity that PN members longed for. Grech, who once supported Delia, has rarely been so openly critical about the incumbent’s tenure.

He said that if he wins the PN leadership, he would keep the door open to Delia to have a unifying role within the party.