Today’s local council association elections have proved disastrous for the Nationalist Party, with the PN losing two regions it had previously controlled.
For the first time in history, the PN lost control of the Gozitan region, with the incumbent president Samuel Azzopardi running as an independent candidate and trashing the PN’s candidate Roberto Tabone by 49 votes to 20.
“Speechless, more than two thirds (68% of all votes),” Azzopardi, a former Rabat mayor, said after the vote. “Majority from both political parties and the independents. Heartfelt thanks. Emotional beyond words.”
Gozo Minister Clint Camilleri praised Azzopardi for his historic victory.
“From the bottom of my heart, I wish Dr Azzopardi all the best to work even more in favour of Gozo and Gozitans,” Camilleri said. “I’m convinced that together with the Gozo Ministry, Gozitan Ministers, MPs, mayors and councillors, we’ll work in synergy for the good of our island.”
The PN also lost the Northern Region, with incumbent Anthony Mifsud losing out to PL candidate Clifford Galea Vella by 30 votes to 41. Galea Vella, a former Naxxar councillor who chairs the LGBTIQ+ consultative council, has become the PL’s first president of the Northern Region.
The other four regions were uncontested, with PL candidates Sandro Azzopardi, Paul Farrugia and Jesmond Aquilina confirmed as presidents of the Western, Port and Southern regions respectively, and PN candidate Anthony Chircop confirmed as president of the Eastern region.
The PN also lost the regional general list by 3-1, with PL electing all their three candidates – Steven Axisa, Maximilian Zammit, and Stephen Sultana – and PN only electing one of their two candidates, Charles Bonello.
Mario Fava was re-confirmed as president of the Local Council Association after he was uncontested for the role.
Cover Photo: Left: Clifford Galea Vella, Right: Samuel Azzopardi
How troubling do you think these results are for the PN?