Delia criticises government on its threat to ‘break industrial law’ on Air Malta

The new PN leader also criticised the Prime Minister for ‘choosing the go abroad’ during the country’s Independence Day celebrations, while making no mention of how he plans to obtain a parliamentary seat

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia addresses members of the party's regional committees
Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia addresses members of the party's regional committees

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia has insisted that what tourism minister Konrad Mizzi had proposed when he threatened to close-down, and re-open, Air Malta with new workers was illegal.

"Konrad Mizzi declared that he was willing to break the law,” said Delia. “A threat of a blatant breach of the industrial law.”

Delia was speaking during a political activity on the Floriana granaries where has answered questions put to him by the Nationalist Party’s regional committees and sections. Delia made no mention of progress made in obtaining a parliamentary seat - a stumbling block the political newcomer seems to be having trouble in overcoming. 

He criticised Prime Minister Joseph Muscat – who is currently at the United Nations General Assembly – for ‘choosing to go abroad’ during the country’s Independence Day activities, a celebration, he said, belonged to the whole nation.  

Reacting to calls by the Labour Party today for him to reverse the PN’s decision not to appoint a representative to the waste to energy board being set up by the government, Delia reiterated that the PN needed to first determine the nature of the government's invitation. 

The Democratic Party, the PN’s coalition partner, has said that it would be nominating its own MP since it believed the Opposition had an obligation to scrutinise the government’s actions.

“The government has known about this problem for a long time and it is now too close to be taking decisions,” said Delia, adding that he was informed that the government had already decided on the way forward anyway.

He accused state media of misquoting him when it reported that he had rejected the Prime Minister’s challenge to reverse the party’s decision.

Delia said “he was informed” that the government’s invitation was limited to a technical committee.

“First the government decided and now it wants to invite one of us to justify the choices it has made,” he said.  “If the government has realised that it has created a problem for itself by waiting too long it should not use the PN to cover up its problem”

He stressed that the PN was willing to involve itself if the role was a consultative one, or one where it would scrutinise the government.

Delia was asked by one committee member where he saw the MNPN – the PN’s women’s section – to which he said that it was time to move away from a way of thinking where the party needed to have a women’s section.

He said that a good idea was good irrespective of whether it came from a man, adding that the party had no ‘men’s section’.

“It is the person that is relevant. The soul and passion of whoever wants to contribute,” he added.

He said the Labour Party would soon be trying to flaunt the number of women in its ranks.

“Let’s not use women for political convenience. Those who find the door closed because of their gender, will find the door of the Nationalist Party wide open,” he said.

The new leader also said that the PN could no longer afford to wait too long to present its election candidates.

“We have already started looking into who our candidates for the next election are going to be,” he said, adding that all candidates needed to be well versed in the “party’s politics” while stressing the need for there to be a “level playing field” among candidates.