Updated | Chris Said leadership bid: I don't need a manual to run this party

PN MP Chris Said sets much store by his experience in party and says PN has no time to waste on honeymoon period after new leader is elected

Chris Said presenting his nomination for Nationalist Party leadership
Chris Said presenting his nomination for Nationalist Party leadership

Shadow Gozo minister and PN MP Chris Said is promoting himself as the best candidate for the PN leadership election, telling a press conference that he doesn’t need “a manual” on how politics work.

“The PN’s new leader will have to pull up his sleeves and start working from day one and start implementation,” Said told a press conference in Safi this morning. “I do not need to walk into the party with a manual on how politics works, because I have a long list of experiences, touching on every level, since the age of 13.”

The Gozitan MP this morning submitted his nomination for the post of leader of the Nationalist Party, where he declared that he was offering his services to “bolster the party”.

“This is not an adventure. I am putting all the experience I gave gained over the years to the party’s disposal so that we can renew it, strengthen it and win over once again the people’s majority,” he said.

 “I know the party’s strengths and weaknesses very well. I will keep building on our strengths, but I will also tackle our weaknesses from the very beginning,” Said said.

He added that the position the PN had found itself in did not lend itself to “a honeymoon period or a learning curve”.

“Faced with a Labour party that has over the years gained ground and appears to have strong leaders who can be considered ‘fighters’, case in point the with the election of Chris Fearne as deputy leader, the Nationalist Party requires a leader that is experienced, a doer, and has vision. I humbly believe that I possess these qualities,” he said.

Said added that if he were elected party leader, he would not be tied up in his office, but would tour every city in Malta and Gozo.

“As leader, at least one day a week, I would work from a party club around the country. I will do this because I am committing myself to meet the 1,000 paid-up members a month in order to get closer to them and hear what they have to say about the party and about the country.”

Said pledged to return party clubs to spots for political discussions, saying that under his leadership, the PN’s clubs would be an important tool to resurrected the concept of street leaders, although adapted to fit current times.

He added that he would ensure that the clubs will have commercial purposes – that do not include being sold – that will produce a financial return to the party in order to address the issue of party financing.

Admitting that Safi was a locality where the Nationalist Party lost support, Said said that within days of becoming party leader, he would commission a study by experts to analyse demographic and social changes in society, with the aim of shedding light on why the PN was no longer “a protagonist in social changes.”

“We want to be the protagonists in these changes, as we were up to a few years ago. Thus, I need to understand the reason why the Nationalist party lost its support, and work to regain it.”

Said added that he will be making more proposals in the coming weeks.

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