Simon Busuttil must cede parliament seat, says PN MP

PN MP Mario Galea has called on the outgoing leader of the opposition Nationalist Party to give up his seat in parliament for the good of the party.

PN MP Mario Galea
PN MP Mario Galea

Simon Busuttil should give up his seat in parliament, PN MP Mario Galea has said.

The PN is to elect a new leader in September. Galea said that although Busuttil was entitled to remain an MP, leaving parliament altogether was the right thing to do in the light of his decision to resign as PN leader.

Busuttil's continued presence in parliament would cast a shadow on any new leader, Galea said, praising former Prime Minister and PN leader Lawrence Gonzi's decision to immediately give up his seat after his resignation from the party leadership in 2013.

Galea's post depicts the party as riven by discontent and simmering resentment.

Under a new PN leader, the Parliamentary Group “could not afford to continue to be a rubber stamp, as it unfortunately ended up many times under Simon Busuttil” Galea continued.

The leader must listen to what the Group had to say before taking positions, he said. “The Parliamentary Group should not discuss an issue after the party has already taken a public position on it,” Galea said, mentioning how Nationalist MPs had found out about the coalition with the Partit Demokratiku through the media.

He said he believed that issues of conscience should always be the subject of a free vote. “I'm no saint, rather I'm a sinner but I gave the party my life. I'm not prepared to also give it my soul.”

Crucial posts such as that of Secretary General must be “elected not imposed,” Galea said, criticising the appointment of Rosette Thake to the position as an imposition by the party leader, when “other very valid people wanted to contest at the time but were ordered not to.”

“Despite her hard work, honesty and all her good intentions, of which I am convinced, the shoe doesn't fit her. She had no idea about political strategy and much less about general elections.”

The party had to work to bring back into the fold, individuals who had held important posts with the party in the past and who had been turned away under Busuttil's leadership.

“The Labour Party brought everyone in. We, on the other hand, threw people away. We opened the doors of the Stamperija in the hope of letting people back in and instead they ended up leaving.”

Whilst he maintained that he respected Busuttil for his hard work, Galea said he disagreed with “the authoritarian style of his leadership,” saying he felt that Busuttil wasn't open to dissenting opinions.

Busuttil “should shut up and stop taking important decisions” that will bind his successor, Galea added.

The MP said he had been “hidden and sidelined” for the past four years after a quarter of a century of service to the party, while Busuttil's leadership had spawned a clique of “gods” whom he got on well with.

“Prima Donnas are useful for operas, not in politics,” Galea said.

He encouraged the PN to re-adopt its original values or lose its core vote. “A party without a direction will find no shelter in any port.”


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