The Prime Minister and a Net journalist got into a spicy back-and-forth outside Castille in Valletta this week.
Net’s Christine Amaira attempted to give Robert Abela an envelope featuring an invitation to debate Opposition leader Adrian Delia on the Nationalist Party’s television channel, Net TV.
However, Abela refused the envelope, saying: “the invitation doesn’t happen by Net TV, the invitation is made in the right and opportune time. And if there is a debate, it shouldn’t be on NET, but on the national station.”
Soon enough, the mental tug-of-war began.
The barbs continued from both directions before Abela eventually changed tack.
“If you want to interpret my answer as a refusal to debate Delia, you have every right to interpret it that way – that’s why we have liberty in this country to interpret things as you wish,” he said.
When Amaira asked for him to accept the debate again, he laughed it off, saying he had already answered.
The Prime Minister ended by saying that even though he had answered Amaira’s question multiple times, he was sure they were still going to report that he refused to debate Delia.
“But be sure that when the moment comes, it will be the biggest pleasure to debate Delia,” Abela ended.
Abela and Delia have yet to debate publicly, though they have had exchanges in Parliament.