Update – official results:
qualified voters: 19,350
uncollected votes: 3,849
votes collected 15,501
early voting: 2597
votes cast on election day (16th September): 12,145
Total votes cast: 14,742
invalid votes: 76
valid votes: 14,666
Chris Said: 6,932 (47.3%)
Adrian Delia: 7,734 (52.7%)
Adrian Delia, a lawyer from Birkirkara who lives in Siggiewi, has been elected new PN Leader with about 54% (now confirmed to be 52.7%) of the votes cast. Delia is married to fellow lawyer Nickie Vella De Fremeaux with whom he fathered 5 kids. Until recently he was the president of Birkirkara F.C, a position he resigned from to run for this election.
Delia has contested the PN leadership election under the slogan “A New Way” projecting himself as an agent of change. Never having been formally active in politics as a front-liner made him a novelty, something that has paid off in this contest. The opposition levelled at him by the outgoing PN Leader Simon Busuttil, sitting MP Jason Azzoppardi, PN’s “Hero” Daphne Caruana Galizia could have been a hurdle, but instead it might have worked in his favour by reinforcing the perception of him as an agent of change.
During the leadership contest he has been accused by his various detractors of owning offshore account, being a Freemason, harbouring conflicts of interest, and having ties with drug trafficking and prostitution circles. Some of these claims look to be quite ridiculous, but others might be a source of real concern.
In his first speech he called for love to trump hate in Malta, yet in his only policy proposal to date he opposed even discussing the legalisation of Marijuana and accused Labour to want to turn the Youth into drug addicts. Delia pledged that the PN will become an inclusive party and open its doors wide open.
Adrian Delia’s election draws the curtains on a harshly contested leadership race.