The Malta Independent 2 March 2024, Saturday
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‘It is a good sign that PL is criticising me, being so negative’ – PN leader Adrian Delia

Helena Grech Monday, 18 September 2017, 21:05 Last update: about 7 years ago

Newly elected PN leader Adrian Delia says Malta is not functioning normally when the leader of the Opposition must personally ask the courts to investigate matters instead of the police

Newly elected Nationalist Party (PN) Adrian Delia said it is a good sign that the Labour Party (PL) has begun to criticise him, and that they have begun to express such a negative message.

The PL have spent the previous legislature constantly slamming the PN for being so negative, for scare mongering, and for being so divisive.

He spoke of this morning’s court case regarding a criminal investigation into the Panama Papers, where Magistrate Aaron Bugeja ruled that the case should be heard openly, with journalists and members of the public present.

Making reference to comments following this morning’s court case, he said that when the Opposition Leader needing to personally present an application in court to investigate the Panama Papers affair, means that Malta is not a normal country as institutions such as the police are not functioning normally.

Delia thanked PN leadership contender Chris Said for accepting his invitation to work together, while also thanking PN MP Jason Azzopardi, who openly backed Said, for providing his legal services during this morning’s court case and the fight against corruption.

Former PN leader Simon Busuttil presented a court application for the Panama Papers scandal to be criminally investigated. This refers to the scandal where Minister Konrad Mizzi and the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri were found with secret companies in Panama sheltered by trusts in New Zealand.

Delia was speaking at a PN political activity, a series in many to celebrate Independence day, with the focus being on the party’s media unit Net.

Head of the PN’s media unit, Fabian Demicoli, asked Delia what his ideas are for making Net a more effective team.

He said that financially, the media house was in dire straits.

“A restructuring was carried out and now the issue has somewhat stabilised. Today, it is still a weight on the party’s finances, there are very serious challenges. However, I choose to look at it as an opportunity. We have already looked at different financial models, and bringing in investment, to help modernise it and make it stronger.”

Delia said that one of the biggest challenges is that news is delivered in a sectorial way, and less generic.

“One of my ideas is that when we have sectoral news, we must figure out a way to target the people who would be specifically interested in them”.

He was referring to different kinds of news, for example economic news, reaching the people within those particular sectors.

“Onto the journalistic side of things, we have discussed an academy, for new people and for experienced one through life-long learning. We would have local and foreign resources to help us with this.”

Onto investigative work, Delia wishes for more journalism of this kind.

“I do not wish for our media to depend on stories that are generated by other media houses.”

In a question put forward by a Net journalist, he slammed the state broadcasting service for spinning “facts”, like the Labour media, and the need for their own media to be more timely when responding.

Delia stressed that it is useless preaching to those who are already converted, and that the PN’s message must be more targeted.

He reiterated his idea for the party’s messages being tailor made for individuals, and the need to invest in the most modern technology.

Outgoing secretary general Rosette Thake, outgoing depoty leaders Mario deMarco and Beppe Fenech Adami , deputy speaker Claudette Buttigieg were all in attendance. PN leadership contender Chris Said, PN MP Jason Azzopardi and PN administrative president Karol Aquilina, the latter two openly against Delia during the campaign, were not in attendance. 

The bulk of the crowd were made up of Net employees and other youngsters associated with the party.

He spoke of making the PN’s media young again. Delia called for giving young people more responsibility, allowing them to make mistakes for themselves, and learning from those mistakes.

“I believe that our youngsters will not just start making mistakes, but they will ask and discuss first. We have big talent, and these youngsters are the future of Malta as well as the party”.

Delia slammed the practice when a prearranged show is being aired on Net TV when a political activity relevant to the party is taking place, and people would have to switch channels to other stations in order to follow. This happened for a PN mass meeting, and again more recently during the PN leadership campaign.

He called for new PN candidates to be given more airtime, questioning how they are going to make a name with people when they aren’t given exposure.

The practice of avoiding sensitive topics should be abolished, with Delia calling for internal debates to be aired on the party’s media for a more open approach.

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