[WATCH] Zammit Dimech: PN must renew itself to rediscover its roots

Former minister submits leadership bid and pledges political programme that reflects Maltese society and its trends.

Francis Zammit Dimech
Francis Zammit Dimech

Former minister Francis Zammit Dimech submitted his candidature for the post of PN party leader today, backed by 37 signatures from PN councillors.

A former cabinet member of the Fenech Adami years, Zammit Dimech, 58, set much store in highlighting his government experience and political pedigree in reply to pundits who have questioned whether he was too old for the job.

"I think there is an exaggerated emphasis on age in Malta, and it should not be the only factor. This is a decision that party councillors will take but age is not without its advantages. It brings experience: I have worked at all party levels, from the PN's youth organ, its party structures, parliament and government," Zammit Dimech said.

So far, Simon Busuttil is the other candidate for the leadership.

"We have a great challenge ahead of us to renew, strengthen and recover the trust of the Maltese and Gozitan people," the MP said, pledging an open party that offers participation, transparency, responsibility and collective action, and an Opposition that is vigilant and read to be an alternative government.

Until recently foreign minister, having stepped into the shoes of Tonio Borg after he was appointed Commissioner to the European Union, Zammit Dimech wants to see the PN embark on a reach-out and membership drive, update its political programme to reflect "a precise illustration of Maltese society and its trends", improve the party's communication and the belegeaured finances, and also appoint a chief executive that would manage the party's non-political daily business.

Zammit Dimech, who pledged a "return to the party's roots" to bring the party structures closer to its grassroots, also said he wanted the PN to hold a national congress and various conferences that would help it map political positions and policies.

Coupled with a membership drive, Zammit Dimech said that if elected leader he will see to the finances of the party - currently in disarray due to years of mismanagement - saying the PN needed "a clear separation between the commercial and political arms."

"The commercial arm must be run on modern management principles, and I will address the party's financial state when I see the details of the situation," Zammit Dimech said, who wants a revision of party structures.

"Going back to our roots means rediscovering a two-way communication with the people... this is indeed a moment of empowerment for our grassroots," the MP said.

In a comparison he struck between Fordist mass production and the eclecticism of Starbucks' coffees, Zammit Dimech said a new political programme for the PN will have to reflect both collective and individual aspirations.

"We need a reaching out process with all sectors of Maltese society, and to be conscious that our political and economic life must consider both macro and micro trends. We must be sensitive towards what the people outside the party are saying and thinking of us."

The MP also said that improving the party's communication of policies was crucial to its renewal. "What's the value of having the best policies if these are not even communicated effectively? The media will be an area of priority.

"Overall, I will give the most importance to the value of honesty: in politics it is not just important what you say or promise, but what gets delivered."


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Rebecca Muscat
Lejn liema għeruq qed jirreferi dan Francis,lejn meta il PN kien partit tas-sinjuri,lejn meta il-PN kien partit faxxista ta' zmien Mossolini,lejn meta kien jopponi kull riforma li kienet ser taġevola xi ftit lill-Ħaddiem,u ruxxmata ta' affarijiet oħra li dejjem sabu oppozizzjoni mill-partit li ser tfittex l-għeruq tiegħu,għidilna lejn liema għeruq qed jirreferi? Għidilna ftit Onorevoli Dr.Francis Zammit Demech. Jekk qed tirreferi għall dawn l-għeruq,ma tantx għandkhom biex tiftaħru.
Joseph Borg
We know you enough ! We cannot see how you can change the mentality of an old, conservative party. Neither you, Simon, or indeed, any other high official at PN, have ever expressed their regret, as to the almost dictatorship style of Gonzi and his hidden, back helm advisors
If this is the best the PN has to offer, then we are in for a very long time wondering whatever became of the PN. So far the leadership nominees that are contesting are within the same clique of cabals that destroyed the faith of the Maltese people for their politicians.
Janice Sant
Illostra kemm irid ihaffer l-isfel biex forsi isib l-gheruq! Not in our life time- at this rate, dear Francis! If you dig at the surface what you will find- in great abundance- is mercenaries! For them its all about money! And this is why the PN has lost big time: it has sold its soul to pedlars and money grabbers!
Rachel Roberts
Isn't FZD, who wants the P.N. to rediscover its roots, one of the P.N.'s roots? He has been always there, since Eddie's time..... who is he trying to "root" ?
PN must renew itself to rediscover its roots: 'Religio Et Patria' do not work today. Best is to modernize like the MLP did. The torch is kinder and PL sounds better and is abvious that it belongs to Malta. To open up to all people means to become a movement as did the PL.
Philip Borg
Iz-zminijiet inbidlu u z-zewg partiti resqu hafna lejn xulxin, cioe' centrali specjalment meta jigu biex jahbu l-passat ta' xulxin u x'gara fit-tmeninijiet meta iz-zewg partiti kienu imdahla fl-irvellijiet tal-15/ottubru 1979 u fil-frame-up ta' missieri, Karm Grima biex jghalqu l-kotba u ma jinkixifx min kien wara l-orkestrazzjoni ta' dan il-krimini fahxi. ghall-iktar dettal staqsu lil Dr. EFA. li ghamel inkjesta u hbija, lil Dr.A.Sant li seraqha u lil Dr. de Marco Guido li orkestra kollox, u lil Dr. Moran u l-Kabinett tal-MLP1980.
justin spiteri
Ill chosen words given the party's fascist roots :-)

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