Delia: PN won’t allow foreigners to profit off country’s assets

The PN leader said both the American University and Vitals projects had failed, and that by refusing to acknowledge this it was the government that was being negative

PN leader Adrian Delia
PN leader Adrian Delia

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia has stressed that his party will not allow foreigners to make a quick profit off the nation’s assets.

Speaking during a brief phone interview on Radio 101, Delia said it was clear that both the American University of Malta project, and the public-private partnership with Vitals Global Healthcare (VGH) had failed.

He said that while the government insisted on calling the opposition negative, it was in fact the government that was being negative by refusing to acknowledge these realities.

On the American University of Malta, Delia said that the Labour Party had tried to convince the nation “that ODZ land should be given up because the American University was one of the best in the world”.

“The government’s only intention was to bring in a company with no experience in education for the purpose of land speculation,” he said. “To give it to foreigners so they can make money off us.”

Had the land been earmarked for “building a hospital or a school” which couldn't have been built anywhere else it would have been one thing, said the PN leader, but it was unacceptable for the country’s environment to be destroyed so that a select few could make money. “It is theft of the nation’s assets,” he said.

Turning to the PN’s request for parliament’s health committee to discuss the concession granted to VGH, Delia said the issue centred around two main issues: healthcare and the concession of government property.

“[Government property] doesn’t belong to Joseph Muscat or the Labour Party, but rather, it is mine, yours, and the entire nation’s,” he stressed, adding that the fact that the published contract had been heavily redacted meant there were still many question marks surrounding the agreement. “Nobody has seen this contract yet”

He said that the company the government had decided could give the best healthcare service for the next 30 years had failed a few months into the project.

“It was clear from the start that we were not giving our hospitals to someone that was capable, but rather to a middleman to allow others to make money,” he added, insisting the PN would not allow others to “make millions” off the concession.

Finally, Delia spoke about the police force, which he said was in a very worrying state. Referring to reports last week that three off-duty policemen were caught in possession of cocaine, the PN leader said this was not a coincidence.

“The officials whose job it is to ensure that certain things don’t happen do them themselves,” he said. “This happens because this government, with this minister, and with this commissioner has allowed a type of attitude to flourish. It stems from the fact that when no action is taken on big issues, then everyone thinks he is above the law.”

He insisted Malta was no longer a “normal country”, since in normal countries, ministers did not defend assistant commissioners accused of domestic violence. Furthermore, he said that it was not normal for the police force to change regulations to facilitate the recruitment of individuals with a criminal record.

Delia said he was preoccupied with current state of affairs, not only as the leader of the opposition, but also as a father and a citizen, adding that government’s attitude explained why criminals felt comfortable enough to place a bomb underneath a car this week, after everything the country had been through in recent months.

More in National