Updated | [WATCH] Chris Fearne and Robert Abela to contest Labour leadership

Party members will choose who will be the next prime minister between Chris Fearne and Robert Abela after nominations for leadership post close

Leadership contestants Chris Fearne and Robert Abela with outgoing Prime Minister Joseph Muscat
Leadership contestants Chris Fearne and Robert Abela with outgoing Prime Minister Joseph Muscat

Chris Fearne and Robert Abela will be vying for the post of Labour Party leader in a two-way contest that will propel either of them directly into Castile.

When the nominations for the post that will be vacated by Joseph Muscat closed this evening, Fearne and Abela were the only two names on the list.

The two-way race means that the candidates will head directly for a vote among the party’s membership base.

This will be the first time that the PL leader will be chosen by the party members and not just delegates.

Whoever wins the race will automatically become Malta’s next prime minister.

Fearne is deputy prime minister, while Abela is a Labour MP.

Fearne announced his nomination in a Facebook video on Wednesday evening.

In his announcment, Fearne said that if he is to be elected, people are to be rest assured that he will “take the decisions that need to be taken in the interest of the party and the country”.

The health minister also said that he will continue to build on the foundations set by outgoing Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.

Muscat announced his resignation late last month but will only step down on 12 January when the new PL leader is expected to be crowned.

The Prime Minister has faced mounting internal and external pressure for his immediate departure after the suspected mastermind in the Daphne Caruana Galizia assassination – Yorgen Fenech – implicated the former chief of staff Keith Schembri.

READ ALSO: Robert Abela blasts ‘diabolical’ Labour leadership pact

READ ALSO: Chris Fearne and Robert Abela in leadership talks

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