Chris Said says he will not stand for election as Nationalist Party deputy leader

Published: October 13, 2017 at 4:46pm

David Agius today came forward officially as a contender for the election of the Nationalist Party’s deputy leader for parliamentary affairs. He is not the sole contender: Edwin Vassallo is in the race too. Nominations close at 6pm today.

When the Nationalist Party broke the news in a press release a few hours ago, this website rang Chris Said, who Adrian Delia, the party leader, had invited to stand for the post. Dr Said had agreed reluctantly, saying that he would do so only if he is the sole contender.

Dr Said confirmed to this website that on the basis of that agreement with the party leader, he will now not stand for election to the post. Mr Vassallo presented no such obstacle, because he has said already that if Dr Said comes forward, he will stand aside.

There are two ways of considering this situation. One is that after a weeks of intensive campaigning, David Agius is so determined to become deputy leader for parliamentary affairs that he has defied the party leader’s wish to pull Dr Said on board to make himself look better with disillusioned supporters who are leaving the party in droves. The other is that Mr Agius did not defy his party leader at all, but on the contrary has hatched a scheme with Dr Delia (he is one of his closest allies and collaborators) to keep out Dr Said, who they don’t actually want around, while at the same time making it look like Dr Delia tried to rope him in for ‘unity’.

Whichever it is, my considered view is that Dr Said was extremely relieved when Mr Agius, who is not known for his intelligence, threw his hat into the ring at the 11th hour. He would not have wanted to refuse Dr Delia’s invitation outright because it would have come across as querulous, but nor would he want to be embroiled in the evolving mess in the Nationalist Party at a formal hierarchical level.

Meanwhile, with just an hour to go until nominations close, Robert Arrigo remains the sole contender for the other deputy leadership role, that for party affairs. Clyde Puli today announced that he wouldn’t be standing for election to that role after all, saying more or less that he respects the party leader’s wish to have one deputy leader from his camp and another who had supported his electoral rivals.

When David Agius put himself forward formally for the one role, which meant Chris Said’s exclusion, it followed that the other role could not be taken up by Mr Puli, who is also a close collaborator of Dr Delia’s. It also assumes that Edwin Vassallo is also one of Dr Delia’s backers or that Mr Agius is bound to win against him. Robert Arrigo did not campaign for Dr Delia.

The election takes place on 18th November.




15 Comments Comment

  1. Ramon Garcia says:

    That’s it then for me. I will not vote for a party who can do no better than offer the likes of the shallow-minded David Agius or terribly conservative Edwin Vassallo as deputy leader.

  2. Dr. Knight says:

    The second scenario you’ve mentioned is more likely. They didn’t really want Chris around. Honestly, I feel strangely relieved.

  3. Chalie15 says:

    Sensible decision by Said. After all Delia’s belittling of him during the campaign, damning him with faint praise, Delia can now enjoy the services of the ever so competent and bright David Agius.

  4. canon says:

    L-imħuħ tajba fil- Partit Nażżjonalista spiċċaw kollha. Issa baqa biss il-laqqax.

  5. Guzu Gatt says:

    I will not pick up my voting document. I have no intention of wasting time supporting one nitwit or another.

  6. A. Cremona says:

    The Nationalist Party, yet again, fucks itself up the arse, alienating voters even further. Never, in its entire history, has it looked so fragmented and undermined. It doesn’t feel like there’s an Opposition anymore. It’s that bad.

  7. You would be surprised. Most people I know are over 40 and highly opposed to Edwin Vassallo.

  8. Pandora says:

    So David Agius has “helped” Chris Said disassociate himself from the new establishment. Meanwhile, Dr Said has said that he will continue to work in the interest of the party he has been serving for so long.

    The question is, is the party still there? Instinct tells me that parliament will be peppered with some independents on the side of the Opposition in the near future.

  9. CynthiaG says:

    The North Korean leaders never ran in a race in which they were facing other candidates.

    • That’s not the point, is it. The point here is that Said would have been doing Delia a favour by standing for election, knowingly being used as a front to make Delia look good while also knowing that he wasn’t wanted for any other reason.

      So no, he shouldn’t have put himself out by running against anyone else when he didn’t actually want the position.

  10. Ganni Muscat says:

    Kemm hu laghqi Puli, qallaghni.

  11. Desert Lizard says:

    They must be going through buckets of popcorn down at the Mile End.

  12. No, they’re just both not particularly bright. Only people who are not very clever smile all the time, whether those smiles are fake or genuine.

  13. Habxi Go says:

    Next time is 100,000+ and i am proud to say: I WILL BE ONE OF THEM!

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