PD will boycott parliamentary vote set to approve George Vella as president

The Democratic Party’s protest is directed at government’s refusal to have the president appointed by a two-thirds parliamentary majority

The PD has welcomed George Vella but its two MPs will boycott the parliamentary session set to approve the new president because government lacked the will to introduce two-thirds majority voting for presidential nominations
The PD has welcomed George Vella but its two MPs will boycott the parliamentary session set to approve the new president because government lacked the will to introduce two-thirds majority voting for presidential nominations

The Democratic Party will be staying away from this evening’s parliamentary session that is set to approve George Vella as president.

The protest is not directed at Vella but at what the party described as government’s "lack of goodwill" to have the president appointed by a two-thirds majority.

The two PD MPs will not be present for the debate. Parliament is set to approve a motion to thank President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca and approve a resolution appointing Vella as the country’s 10thpresident.

In its statement, the PD thanked Coleiro Preca and welcomed Vella.

“The PD opposition will not be present during this evening’s parliamentary debate… once government did not show the goodwill to amend the Constitution to appoint the president by a two-thirds majority… Malta has a dysfunctional democracy and presidents of the republic in their majority have been merely figureheads in their relative silence,” PD leader Godfrey Farrugia said.

The PD had asked for a constitutional amendment to have the new president appointed by a two-thirds majority in a bid to reduce the powers of the prime minister. The president is appointed by simple majority.

The Nationalist Party has said it will vote for Vella’s nomination but had initially insisted the next president should come from the PN camp.

“Presidents must be given the necessary powers to ensure good governance and have an Institution such as a council of state, which would be made up of individuals whose role would be to advise the president,” Farrugia said, outlining some of PD’s proposals for constitutional reform.

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