[WATCH] New PL leader Robert Abela: 'Not a win for me but a win for the party'

Set to be the next Prime Minister, Robert Abela calls for unity and collaboration

Robert Abela exits the Labour Party headquarters to a wave of supporters
Robert Abela exits the Labour Party headquarters to a wave of supporters

New Labour leader and set to replace Joseph Muscat as Malta's next Prime Minister, Robert Abela, in his first address to the nation as PL chief said that this was not a win for him or a loss for adversary Chris Fearne but a win for the party.

Supporters waiting outside for him outside the PL headquarters seemed to think otherwise, however, as a roaring wave of revelers sought to shake his hand and congratulate him after the win was announced.

It was a landslide victory for Abela, the margin of victory somewhat of a surprise, as Fearne was touted as the favourite and most logical follow-up to Muscat, having been the second-in-command to the Prime Minister. 

With a turnout of 92.5%, 57.9% of PL members voted for Robert Abela while 41.1% voted for Chris Fearne. Abela garnered 2,544 more votes than Fearne.

This was the first election where PL members chose their leader. 17,500 members were eligible to vote.

In his first comments to the media as he came out of the headquarters to a throng of thrilled supporters, Abela said: "The important thing now is to pull the same rope. This is not a victory for me, nor is it a loss to the other candidate. It is a win for the Labour Party."

More in National