Updated | Delia: PN must unite in unanimous voice to succeed

The Nationalist Party leader said unity was the only way to challenge the government and the lack of rule of law

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia said the party must remain untied if it is to succeed
Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia said the party must remain untied if it is to succeed

In order for the Nationalist Party to succeed it must come together and work on challenging the government and corruption in the country, party leader Adrian Delia said this morning.

Addressing a political activity in Qormi, Delia said that the country needed a clean government, insisting that Joseph Muscat did not care about what happened after he left his position, and that as a result, the government was not planning for the future.

“If a corrupt government can create wealth, a clean government could create much more,” Delia said. “With all this surplus, why is the Government not working towards our future?”

He said that in a year where the government had registered a surplus, statistics showed that a quarter of Maltese children remained at risk of poverty. This showed that the Government was not interested in the people’s needs, Delia said.

Turning to the PN”s failed parliamentary motion this week, for a legal notice granting 100 hours of leave for IVF treatment to be repealed, Delia reiterated that the PN did not believe same sex couples should not be given the opportunity to have children, as many have suggested. Rather, he again insisted that the motion had been passed in order to address a legal anomaly that had been created by the legal notice.

Furthermore, he criticised the present administration for not doing enough when it came to hospital services, homes for the elderly, transport and Malta’s financial services sector, which is currently under fire for its role in facilitating tax avoidance in other countries.

PN clubs will not be sold if they don’t have to be – Clyde Puli

Speaking for the first time since being elected party secretary general, MP Clyde Puli said the party would not be selling any of its clubs if it didn’t have to.

He underscored a number of challenges that lay ahead for the PN, not least, the financial troubles the party still finds itself in.

Reacting to revelations over the weekend, that the PN had agreed, back in 2015, to sell of ten of its clubs, Puli said clubs were a big resource for the party, which would only be sold if it was absolutely necessary. He added however, that the PN would be honouring contractual deals it was bound by. 

“We may have financial problems, but we never stole property like Labour did with the Australia Hall,” he said.

The Labour government “stole 13 properties” from Maltese families to use them as party clubs, said Puli, adding that the PN did not operate in such a way.

Restructuring of party media key to saving clubs – Delia

In comments to MaltaToday following his speech Delia said the PN needed to find new and innovative ways of generating income from its properties for it to avoid a situation were it needs to sell more of them.

Asked whether he could guarantee that no more would be sold, the PN leader said that, with regards to the clubs already placed in Patria Trust, the “current thinking” was to find ways of raising enough money to have the properties removed from the trust.

He explained that, in order for this the happen, the party would have to match the amount at which a property was valued, something it was not currently in a position to do.

“We want to try and liberate some of the clubs already committed and explore whether we can redevelop them rather than sell them or earn money from them,” he said, adding that he was committed to not adding any more clubs to the list.

“The plan was not only for a year, but for them to be put there for a number of years so if we are to continue selling, it will from the ones that have been put there. “

Of the properties already committed to the trust, Delia explained that it was no longer in his control since it was the trustees that had to power to take decisions now.

Above all, he stressed the need for the party to reduce its expenses. He said that as such, the party did not lose money, and simply needed to raise funds for its annual activities.

Media.Link, its media branch did however, stressed the PN leader. He said that it was for this reason, that the decision was taken for former Malta Independent director of content, Pierre Portelli, to oversee a restructuring exercise of the company.

He said the next step was for the party to start paying off its debt and reduce interest payments due to the banks.

“We need to do everything in this regard [to consolidate finances], but in two months one cannot reinvent the wheel. We need to see what the program is and to keep with it, and to keep communications with the bank,” he went on.

“If we keep on respecting the plan already in place and doing the work that is already being done, we are already safe.”

Delia also emphasised that the political effect of selling the clubs should be taken into consideration, explaining that the social value of a particular club in a particular village needs to be assessed before any further steps were taken.