The Malta Independent 11 December 2017, Monday

I am sorry for Eddie

Stephen Calleja Tuesday, 29 August 2017, 09:17 Last update: about 4 months ago

The Nationalist Party should be ashamed of itself.

From Simon Busuttil down to the least important official, they should be ashamed of the way they allowed the campaign for the new leadership to turn out – some for what they did and said, and others for what they failed to do or say to keep matters in check.

It is a pity that, day after day, if not hour after hour, the race for the top post in the party has deteriorated into a battle of insults, underhand manoeuvres and spiteful back-stabbings that has brought the party to its knees.

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Much more than that two massive drubbings suffered in successive elections, this race for PN leader has exposed a party that is shattered, divided and unfit to lead itself, let alone the country.

I said it right from the start that the electoral process was too long. Nearly three months have passed since the general election, and all we’ve had from the PN so far is nothing more than an internal war.

MPs and officials fight for one candidate against the other, denigrate their favourite’s opponents, and are embroiled in a conflict that will be hard to recover from once the dust settles, if it settles at all.

All battles for political leadership are bitter, and carry a dose of unpleasant behaviour from the sides involved, but we’ve never seen anything like this. It might be because the social media adds fuel to the raging fires and is being used indiscriminately by the candidates and their supporters to gain some advantage. Sometimes the wrong information is fed to the wrong people who make it public without thinking of the consequences of their impulsiveness.

What is sure is that, come what may, and whoever is elected, the party’s new chapter will be starting on a very wrong foot.

The Nationalist Party boasts of what it says is its glorious past. But it is unlikely that its future will be likewise.

The party that led the country to independence, lifted it out of socialism and the terrible years of political violence and later took it into the European Union is now a party which does not know where it is going, let alone knowing how to get there. And I’m not just referring to ideology.

I just wonder what Eddie Fenech Adami is thinking, seeing the Nationalist Party he proudly led at its height of its glory crumbling to bits.

I am sorry for him.

 

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