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PN Explains Its Differing Opinion To Manuel Delia’s Latest Criticism Of Adrian Delia

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The Nationalist Party has distanced itself from Manuel Delia’s latest criticism of former PN leader Adrian Delia following the public inquiry into the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

“The Nationalist Party has a difference of opinion when it comes to Manuel Delia’s analysis of PN MP Adrian Delia in the context of the public inquiry,” a PN spokesperson told Lovin Malta. 

“The Board of Inquiry mentions Adrian Delia’s name four times. In none of these instances does the inquiry imply Delia is involved in organised crime or other illicit practices.”

It said it refuses any equivalence of the criticism or allegations levelled at Adrian Delia, with the “now proven culpability of Joseph Muscat and his Labour Party in a political assassination”.

The public inquiry noted that Caruana Galizia had fiercely “attacked” (qatta bla ħabel) Delia during his 2017 PN leadership election campaign.

“Despite everything, he was elected as Opposition leader and therefore it appeared that Mrs Caruana Galizia was now completely isolated and attacked from all sides,” the inquiry wrote. “However, she held strong because hits on her posts had reached a post and she was extremely popular among her readers.”

“This wasn’t enough to guarantee her security as the attacks on her increased and intensified, both in tone and action.”

The inquiry also referred to “allegations” of misconduct made against Delia and his then-chief of media Pierre Portelli, wrongly referring to him as the PN’s secretary general.

Manuel Delia (right) during a recent interview with Jon Mallia

Manuel Delia (right) during a recent interview with Jon Mallia

Manuel Delia flagged this in a blogpost, using a photo of Adrian Delia and Joseph Muscat shaking hands at a meeting, as his cover photo.

Adrian Delia responded by accusing Manuel Delia of lying.

“It’s not true that the inquiry named me in connection with “allegations of misconduct, familiarity, and proximity with people implicated in the killing of DCG”,” he said.

“This is an absolute lie which is emphasised by a photo, as though you’re tying to imply something. Liar,” he said.

Manuel Delia responded by posting screenshots of the part of the inquiry report in question.

“The choice of the photo of Adrian Delia with Joseph Muscat is, of course, mine. I do not “think I am implying” something. I am saying that both Adrian Delia and Joseph Muscat are named in the list of enablers for organised crime identified by the inquiry,” he said.

This is the PN’s response in full:

“The Nationalist Party has a difference of opinion when it comes to Manuel Delia’s analysis of PN MP Adrian Delia in the context of the public inquiry.”

“The Board of Inquiry mentions Adrian Delia’s name four times. In none of these instances does the inquiry imply Delia is involved in organised crime or other illicit practices.” 

“The Inquiry simply states the well-known fact that when Delia contested for leadership, Daphne Caruana Galizia attacked him “qatta bla habel”. It later says that this meant she was politically isolated in the time leading up to her murder. Lastly, the inquiry points out that Adrian Delia had filed five libel suits against her.”

“What the inquiry argues is that since our institutions were not working, when allegations were made against the leader of the Opposition, this could have fuelled the sense of impunity that was festering in the country.”

“By contrast, the board of inquiry is damning against Joseph Muscat, his Cabinet and his parliamentary group because they deliberately enabled a culture of impunity by giving their express support to people like Keith Schembri and Konrad Mizzi when their wrongdoing was blatantly proven.” 

“The report says that those “in the heart of Castille” created a culture of impunity that like an octopus enveloped the regulatory authorities and the police, resulting in the total collapse of the rule of law.” 

“It also says that by not taking any action, the Cabinet and the parliamentary group prioritised the wealth of a few instead of protecting the person who was revealing their corrupt practices, and this eventually allowed Daphne Caruana Galizia to be killed.”

“The Nationalist Party refutes any equivalence of the criticism or allegations levelled at Adrian Delia, with the now proven culpability of Joseph Muscat and his Labour Party in a political assassination.”

“The inquiry singles out the following projects that, if proven, would fall into the category of involving “people who work with criminals for illicit and illegal gains”: the Panama Papers, 17 Black, Electrogas, the hospitals’ project and the Montenegro wind farms, among others.”

“It must be said that Adrian Delia, both as former leader of the Opposition and now as a sitting MP, has taken forceful action against many of the corrupt projects, not least against the Vitals/Steward deal of a 30-year concession over three state hospitals, where Delia lodged court proceedings to annul the corrupt deal.”

“The Nationalist Party encourages and defends the right of journalists to express themselves freely, without fear or favour. It also feels a sense of duty to explain its position with regard to members of its parliamentary group when these are on the receiving end of criticism that merits further explanation.”

“Most importantly, it urges all people of goodwill to unite with the Opposition to provide the country with an alternative government that can rebuild Malta’s credentials as a trusted democracy governed by the rule of law in which hardworking men and women can thrive and feel safe.”

What action should be taken following the conclusion of the public inquiry? 

READ NEXT: Protest At Castille This Evening To Demand Resignation Of Cabinet Following Public Inquiry Publication

Tim is interested in the rapid evolution of human society brought about by technological advances. He’s passionate about justice, human rights and cutting-edge political debates. You can follow him on Twitter at @timdiacono or reach out to him at [email protected]

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