Adrian Delia in wait-and-see game over Simon Busuttil's PN future

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia will be waiting for Simon Busuttil to resign of his own accord before the party is asked to take further action against its former leader, sources have indicated

Adrian Delia addressing the press after the PN administrative council backed his decision to ask for Simon Busuttil's resignation
Adrian Delia addressing the press after the PN administrative council backed his decision to ask for Simon Busuttil's resignation

It's a wait-and-see game by the Nationalist Party's administration as it hopes for Simon Busuttil to resign from the parliamentary group of his accord as demanded by leader Adrian Delia, MaltaToday has learnt.

Sources who spoke to MaltaToday said that if Busuttil did not resign himself, the administration could take the matter before the PN executive or even call an extraordinary general council.

Delia has called on Busuttil to resign from the PN’s parliamentary group, following the publication of the Egrant Inquiry which found no evidence linking Prime Minister Joseph Muscat or his wife to the company Egrant Inc.

Reacting to Delia’s call, Busuttil said he saw no reason for him to resign, stressing that it was the Opposition’s duty, in a democracy, to speak about serious allegations.

Delia’s call was unanimously backed by the PN administrative council late on Sunday night after an emergency meeting. However, the decision to ask for Busuttil's resignation has seen a number of MPs rebel against their leader, expressing their opposition on social media all throughout Monday.

READ MORE: Adrian Delia faces growing rebellion over Simon Busuttil resignation call

Meanwhile, PN MEP Roberta Metsola has asked the parliamentary group and the PN’s executive to meet in order to discuss the situation in the party.

In a Facebook post, Metsola acknowledged that there were conflicting views within the PN on how best to "fight corruption and the abuses perpetrated by the Labour government".

PN MEP Roberta Metsola
PN MEP Roberta Metsola

She called for the party's internal organs to deal with the matter. "We have a big responsibility towards our members, the party, voters and the country," she added.

Asked whether she agreed that Busuttil should resign from Parliament and the party, a spokesperson for the MEP said that she had already made her opinion known internally and would continue to be a part of the discussion on the way forward.

Metsola, who is believed to have her own leadership ambitions, is one of a handful of prominent PN politicians to have refrained from making her views public following the inquiry’s publication.

Chris Said, who last September lost the party’s leadership race to Delia, has also not commented on the current situation, or indeed whether he believes that Delia was right to ask for Busuttil’s resignation.