The Malta Independent 16 May 2022, Monday

TMID Editorial - PN: Vendettas and unsubstantiated claims

Friday, 6 May 2022, 09:13 Last update: about 10 days ago

It seems that the Nationalist Party’s wounds will never be allowed to heal.

Not only has the party suffered another trashing at the polls, but now, one of its former top MPs has declared open war against its leader, Bernard Grech. And it seems, once again, that this is due to personal vendetta.

While it is very normal for there to be unrest and upheaval after an electoral defeat, one perhaps did not expect that trouble this time would be caused by an MP who had fought so hard to depose Adrian Delia and to be replaced by the incumbent leader.

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Azzopardi’s claims seem to have been spurred by comments made by Grech during a recent interview, in which he was asked about Azzopardi’s failure to get elected and said that MPs eventually reach their ‘expiry date.’

What Grech said was true. After all, the people spoke with their ballots and chose to keep Azzopardi out of Parliament.

Azzopardi may feel that the party did not back him, or that it even worked against him, but the fact remains that he enjoyed a very bright spotlight over the past five years, having been the lawyer for the Daphne Caruana Galizia family and in other high-profile cases.

Over the past few years, he was appointed shadow minister for justice, the economy and later for the environment – three major portfolios – so he certainly cannot say that he was sidelined.

He also frequently made the news with his bombshell claims on social media, and always portrayed himself as the unblemished politician who was ready to fight corruption on his own, if need be. But, in the end, he failed to get elected.

Perhaps the people chose to vote Jason out because of his failure to toe the party line, and because of his extreme negativity and hate towards anything Labour.

Now he has claimed that Bernard Grech took donations from a couple of relatives of Yorgen Fenech after he had discussed a presidential pardon with them.

The claim is rich, coming from someone who had stayed at the Hilton in Tel Aviv for free, courtesy of the Tumas family.

The party set in motion its structures and gave Azzopardi 24 hours to substantiate his claims. Instead, he chose to resign, avoiding such a process.

It is such a shame that people like Azzopardi keep trying to undermine the party at every turn, and breach ethics and instructions to get some media attention.

If Azzopardi is truly out of politics, and if he truly respects the choice the electorate made, then he should bow out gracefully and settle back in the private sector as a lawyer.

If he has proof of wrongdoing, he should either go to the police with the information or publish it himself. If he doesn’t, then he should let it lie. There is no point in throwing mud and then failing to back up the allegations.

Such actions only show him to be a sore loser. There were other former MPs who failed to get elected, but none of them tried to smear the party leader’s name like Azzopardi did.

If he truly loves the party, he should bow his head down to the will of the people and help the PN in other ways, instead of trying to destroy the little there is left.

 

 

 

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