Delia insists on due diligence as PN executive agrees on procedure

Updated 12:50 PM
Miguela Xuereb

The Nationalist Party’s executive committee has agreed that the due diligence process on prospective candidates in its upcoming leadership election should take no longer than six weeks in a meeting held on Tuesday evening.

Concurrently, during a meeting of the party’s administrative council, embattled party leader Adrian Delia insisted that he should be subject to a full due diligence process, as should any other candidates for the PN’s top post.

So far, Delia – who had unsuccessfully sought to avoid a leadership election, only to be defied by the party’s general council – is the only one to have confirmed his intention to contest the upcoming election. The party launched a call for expressions of interest earlier in the day, and prospective candidates will need to come forward by 10 August.

Ahead of the meeting, a PN spokesman told Newsbook.com.mt that the executive committee and administrative council meetings were routine; according to the party’s statute, the former should meet at least once a month, while the latter has to meet every fortnight.

Reports suggested that Delia’s supporters may have sought to push for the PN leader to be waived from the due diligence process, though Delia ultimately put paid to such arguments.

“I insisted that the verification and due diligence process should not only be enforced, but should be one in the most rigorous way possible on all those who express interest in contesting the leadership election, myself included,” Delia said. “I feel that it is in the best interest of the PN and in the best interest of the process itself.”

It will ultimately be up to the PN’s paid-up members (tesserati) to choose their party’s leader, but they will only be presented with a choice of two candidates. Should more candidates throw their hat in the ring, it will be up to the general council to whittle their number down to two.