Sue me, Delia tells Azzopardi in challenge to publish Yorgen Fenech chats

Facebook spat reignites longstanding feud between Nationalist MPs Jason Azzopardi and Adrian Delia

Nationalist MP Adrian Delia
Nationalist MP Adrian Delia

A libel case victory for Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi has reignited the unrequited feud with former Opposition leader Adrian Delia on Facebook.

Azzopardi this week won €1,000 in damages from Vincent Borg, aka Ċensu l-Iswed, over a claim the latter made on social media about the MP, a longtime opponent of Delia’s leadership.

“I know he was used, fooled and manipulated to throw mud at me,” Azzopardi said on his Facebook wall, announcing the libel victory.

Azzopardi won the damages over a defamatory statement made by Borg on Facebook in the form of a question alleging the MP had “used” Portomaso “to meet with a working girl”, the inference being a prostitute.

No sooner had Azzopardi announced his victory that MP Adrian Delia hit out at him, challenging him to sue him for libel over a series of statements.

“Do you love the truth, Hon. Azzopardi? Do you want to give charity with other people’s money? Do you seriously want unity in the party? Then publish those 700 texts you have of mine; explain how you had sole access to the Yorgen Fenech texts when you’re not a member of the police corps; tell us if it was you who got your lies printed on the front pages of the ‘independent’ media; substantiate your claims that I was in Fenech’s pockets.

“Declare all your taxable income instead of lying; explain how you earned a living without a cent; explain your lies and work against your every own party… you went to lawyer up against someone [Borg] who risked his life for the party years before you were born? Now you tell us who was manipulated and fooled.”

There is a long history of feuding between Delia and Azzopardi, the latter opposing his leadership bid while the former having openly denounced his actions against him: in July 2020, Delia filed a judicial protest against Azzopardi, over what he said were defamatory claims about his alleged communications with Yorgen Fenech, the Tumas magnate accused of masterminding the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

One of the texts, referred to in the judicial protest - which Delia is maintaining was sent by Azzopardi to another party - reads: ‘Of course it is! And you have no idea of the hundreds of other messages in the mobile of Fenech in 2019 relating to the payment to Delia of €50,000 and pledge of €100,000 or more if Casa was not elected. You have NO idea what I’ve been holding up inside me since January. Know once and for all that the man is a pathological liar.’

Earlier in February 2020, Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi accused  Delia of deceiving his parliamentary group by refusing to resign in the face of polling data showing the Nationalist Party unable to gain ground. Delia’s trust rating had hit its lowest level in two years, according to a MaltaToday survey, reversing gains made towards the end of 2019.