[WATCH] Grech: PM had decided to call general election but ‘something changed’

Opposition leader Bernard Grech says it was wrong for the Prime Minister Robert Abela to not quash rumors on a possible general election

Opposition leader Bernard Grech
Opposition leader Bernard Grech

The leader of the Opposition Bernard Grech insisted Prime Minister Robert Abela had decided on calling an early general election, but changed his mind at the last minute.

“The reality is that he had considered calling a general election, he had also decided on going ahead with his plans, but something happened in the weekend after my speech in parliament,” he said in an interview on NET TV.

After long weeks of election talk for the end of this year, Abela officially ruled out a 2021 election on Monday.

On Saturday, the PM accused the PN of devising a ruse for an early election in a bid at creating uncertainty and derail the economy during its recovery after COVID.

“I always spoke of the national interest. When it came to taking a decision, it was clear to me that the government should implement the budget,” Abela said.

The Nationalist leader also said that it was “irresponsible” for the PM to not quash election rumors when questions by journalists in the past two months.

“A serious Prime Minister does not do that, he should have removed speculation,” Grech said. “He does not know how to take decisions.


Referring to an EY survey published last week, which showed that 70% of youths in Malta want to leave the country for good, Grech said it boils down to the government’s failure to address a number of issues over the past eight years.

“Beyond government buzz words, and the money it spent on trying to convince people it was a good budget, youths are not believing it the mantra,” he said. “You don’t solve problems with slogans or PR.”

He said the country needs a serious debate on the issue.

“We need to take this country back to reality, but no politician or party can do this alone,” he said.

Konrad Mizzi

This week, former Energy Minister Konrad Mizzi announced he would be available to testify before the Public Accounts Committee after the 3 November.

But Grech said Mizzi’s recent no-shows mean his words could hold no truth.

“His promise does not mean anything to me – he only got into politics to steal, but he has the obligation to respect the country’s highest institution,” Grech said.

He also called out the Labour Party for continuing to defend Mizzi.

“The Labour Party TV station defend him, and that shows he is still an integral part of the party.

Grech also called out ONE TV presenter Karl Stagno Navarra’s comments on journalist Tim Diacono, saying it was a sign of panic within the party.

“They all think like that. Look at how the minister he had on his show continued as if nothing had happened. They are arrogant,” he said.


On governance, the Opposition leader said respected social partners like the Business Chamber and the UHM, have all come forward with proposals for better governance.

“This shows there is a lack of governance,” the PN leader said.

He insisted the order of the day should be tendering in line with the law and regulations.

“That is why if I become PM I will ensure that every euro people pay in tax, is spent in the best way possible for the country,” he said.


Speaking on the environment, Grech said it was always a main pillar in his work going forward since being elected leader.

“We as the PN have said for years now that we are losing the country’s urban centres, and so we are losing our identity,” Grecg said. “That is why if elected PM I will be letting go of my powers so we do not allow for another scandal like the Sadeen one to happen again.”

“We need checks and balances if we are to save the country,” he insisted.