Portelli claims ‘patriotism’ is route to victory for PN

Leadership candidate claims that he would repatriate 80% of immigrants if elected prime minister

Frank Portelli
Frank Portelli

PN leadership candidate Frank Portelli claimed that he would work towards repatriating 80% of immigrants, in a televised interview on TVM’s current affairs programme, Dissett.

Drawing a clear line on his position on the matter, he stated that the Nationalist Party needed to elect “a patriot” if it wanted to return to power.

The stance, redolent of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign in the US, was made clearer when Portelli referenced the incident that occurred in Buġibba, where a number of men came to blows last week.

He claimed that some of these immigrants were “bringing their wars to Malta with them” while stating that he was against multiculturalism.

Portelli claimed that his position on repatriation was justified by the fact that most migrants who came to Malta were in fact economic migrants. This is borne out by UNHCR statistics. However these show that the overwhelming majority arrives from the United Kingdom, followed by Italy, Somalia, Bulgaria and Germany.

Portelli’s comments followed an earlier video posted on Facebook where he had targeted Islam, claiming that the Imam’s teachings were not in line with the Maltese Constitution.

He stated that the Imam had been quoted saying that he found nothing wrong with cutting off a thief’s hand and as a result his teachings could not be taught in Maltese schools.

Positioning himself furthest to the right among side of the four leadership candidates, he also referenced the Equal Marriage Bill, claiming that Joseph Muscat was not really in favour of it but was using gays as political pawns. 

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