Two hundred signatures were collected in a petition which calls for on the highest organ of Partit Nazzjonalista to convene within a week and take a secrete vote on Adrian Delia’s leadership.
The petition was presented on Tuesday afternoon by member of PN’s executive committee Ivan Bartolo, accompanied by executive committee member and Gudja local councillor Mark Anthony Sammut, MŻPN’s secretary general Emma Portelli Bonnici, vice-president of PN’s Forum for Professionals Martin Musumeci and district representative and local councillor Emvin Bartolo.
“We cannot remain in this status quo”
Addressing the press, Bartolo who once supported Delia in his leadership bid, reiterated what he had penned in his opinion piece in the Monday’s edition of the Times of Malta. He underlined that it is not business as usual, and that the party needs to wake up in the context of the recently held elections. Bartolo warned that the current impasse can lead to a one-party state.
The former election candidate added that no one wishes for a one-party state, and if such a situation materializes there will be no party or democracy to save.
‘The party burnt too many bridges’
Citing his opinion piece, Bartolo highlighted that the party had burnt too many bridges with various cohorts of the electorate who would traditionally vote the Nationalist party, adding that without such groups the Nationalist party could never win an election. Bartolo warned that common sense shows that going to polls in such a state would assure a win for Partit Laburista.
In his opinion piece in the Times of Malta, Bartolo revealed that he was the first person to sign the petition which asks the General Council to convene within a week and take a secret vote on Adrian Delia’s leadership.
On Tuesday a counter petition was launched by backers of the embattled leader Adrian Delia urging the general council to disqualify the petition requesting a vote on Delia’s leadership.
Taking questions from the press, former PN’s executive committee president explained that the statute is clear on this, adding that when a request which is signed by 150 party councillors is presented to the general council, then it is obliged to discuss such requests. Sammut added that Article 26(d) is clear that each request needs to be put forward to the general council for discussion.
Referring to the counter petition, Sammut said that their petition is not on electing a new PN leader but is a request to the general council to see if the leader still enjoys its trust.
Sammut clarified that members of the general council can collect signatures for a counter petition but cannot disqualify a request, since each request needs to be discussed. He further explained that the statute gives the right to members of the general council, while the paid-up members who enjoy every right to express themselves and can sign, but they cannot stop a request from being discussed.
No MP signed the petition
Bartolo replying to questions from the press said that no MPs signed the petition which was presented on Tuesday, explaining that this was a grassroots initiative with the Members of Parliament having their own forum.