I decided to write on a Monday instead of the usual Friday to wait for the outcome of the elections held by the General Council of the Nationalist Party last Saturday.
The councillors have spoken, and the result is clear cut as a result could be, more than two thirds of the eligible voters have chosen to keep Adrian Delia at the helm of the Party. It is now time to move on. Like always there are choices that can be made, decisions that can be taken by those who for some reason or another had opposing views from most of the councillors.
One can simply take a step back from politics, stop being an active party member and focus on other things in life in the hope that three years will pass quickly and that subsequently a leader of their liking will be elected. One must understand that no matter how hard he tries, Adrian Delia will never manage to convince everyone that he is the right man for the job, and therefore it is useless trying to convince this sector otherwise. Moving forward is not an option, it is the only choice. While all this was happening, Labour increased the pace, steadied its stride and now the distance between the two parties has grown even bigger. The PN must start concentrating in gaining the lost ground with no delay if it wants to stand a chance in not being humiliated yet again in the next general elections.
Out of the five hundred or so that voted NO there is a faction that stands to be convinced that Adrian Delia deserves to be given another chance. These people need to be identified as soon as possible and handled with care, handled with dignity and listened to. I am sure that there are varying reasons why people voted NO and these reasons must be identified and addressed. The Nationalist Party was never a good listener and this shortage needs to be addressed, as a matter of fact it should be an integral important part of the new way that Delia advocated during his leadership campaign two long years ago.
There will always be dissenters. The untouchable Eddie Fenech Adami had to deal with a fair share of them, and truth be said, he only partly silenced them by winning, and winning and winning again. All the good intentions in politics count for nothing if you do not win. Adrian Delia won last Saturday, and he needs to keep on winning now, winning not only the hearts of the ever faithful but win over the minds of those who are sceptical but not biased. He needs to win over those who never voted PN but do not identify themselves with Labour any longer. Adrian Delia must forget the floaters of 2013; they are now switchers and will not switch back to the PN easily. Delia and the PN must seek and explore pastures new. They need to become the voice of those who notwithstanding the “economic boom” that this country is experiencing, are still emarginated, still feel left out and have no one to speak up for them, no one to share their woes with and no one that can alleviate the burden of their every day life.
It is hard to build bridges with those that have tried so hard to burn them, but Adrian Delia seems determined to do just that. Notwithstanding the cries of his diehards to expel the rebels, he has once again extended the hand of friendship he has shown over and over that he really means what he says with gestures like this. He must curb the over enthusiasm of his diehards though. Unfortunately, there seem to be a tad too many vigilantes all acting in the name of the party and the leader and Delia must ensure that no one has a free hand no matter how loyal and how good the intentions might be.
Adrian Delia must focus on a serious strategy that can offer a serious alternative to the politics of Joseph Muscat and co and as such he needs to look further away from Pieta and start recruiting relevant people that can make a difference. There are many Nationalist leaning minds that are just a phone call away. There might be some convincing to be done but I am sure that Adrian Delia has got what it takes to convince the right people to come on board.
If there ever was a baptism of fire, Adrian Delia just went through it. He emerged bruised but strong enough to fight another day. There will be no easy tasks for him mind you. Labour seems to grow stronger by the minute and he will always have those who will criticize him no matter what he does and what he says.
The task he faces is immense and many would shy away from undertaking such huge responsibility especially after the barrage that he went through. He is not perfect, his life is not all rosy but if anything, he has shown resolve and during all this saga, he was never bitter and always spoke positively. I do not know if he stands a chance to win the next general election but what is sure is that he has earned the right to fight it.