The Malta Independent 23 September 2020, Wednesday

‘Absolute fiction’ Claudio Grech says when asked about his leadership bid rumours

Kevin Schembri Orland Tuesday, 11 February 2020, 07:30 Last update: about 9 months ago

PN MP Claudio Grech has described rumours about his potential leadership bid as “absolute fiction”, when confronted by The Malta Independent.

Adrian Delia has faced fresh calls for his resignation, after a survey showed that he had an abysmal trust rating. Since then, several high up party officials have resigned, including Clyde Puli from the post of Secretary General, and Robert Arrigo from the post of PN Deputy Leader (who will be staying on till March)

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The rumour mill is churning out different scenarios for the future of the PN as current leader Adrian Delia is facing calls to resign. One such rumour, is that Claudio Grech is being pushed to become party leader. In light of this, The Malta Independent contacted Grech, and asked for his opinion on Delia’s position, whether he believes the PN Leader should resign.

Grech said: “We were extremely clear in what we said previously. The issues were discussed in the Parliamentary Group and we will definitely keep discussing them in that context. The reality is that ultimately these are not issues to be discussed and exposed in a public forum. We have the right internal forum and structures to discuss these matters. When someone wants to discuss these matters openly outside of the party then it is up to him or her, but I shall retain my obligation to discuss these matters internally within the party.”

Asked specifically about rumours that he could be a potential new leader, and whether he would be up to contesting for such a post, Grech said: “in my opinion this is not an issue of who is going to be leader or otherwise. It is about the party’s situation and the party’s future. Our discussion has to be completely in that context. All the rumours that there have been by those fuelling them are all fiction. All those rumours are invented to fit a particular narrative to try to paint a situation where someone would say that an action is being taken because of a particular position. It is absolutely fiction. Whenever there was an issue about the leadership of the party over the past couple of years I made myself very clear three times on this matter. This issue is not about me or anyone else wanting to contest the leadership of the party. But in my case I am very clear that this has absolutely nothing to do with any potential leadership bid whatsoever.”

The Nationalist Party Executive Committee is set to hold a meeting today, but a discussion on the party leadership in the context of what happened with the Parliamentary Group is not on the agenda, Executive Committee President Alex Perici Calascione told The Malta Independent. However, he said, it could be brought up in terms of matters arising.

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