Filed by Spartacus.

In 1977, Dr Eddie Fenech Adami was elected as leader of the Nationalist Party. Some time later, at a rally held at the Plaza cinema in Sliema, Dr Fenech Adami delivered his first public speech. In this speech he expressed the danger that was looming then: the merging of the GWU with the Malta Labour Party. As time passed during his speech, we became convinced that this man was a true leader of men. We were galvanised. This man acted like a positive catalyst that would definitely revive the party after two defeats. And when we emerged from the theatre, we found ourselves facing searchlights from the opposite direction. If someone thought that this would intimidate us, he was totally wrong. This man had injected in us hope and courage.

By 1981, the NP obtained the majority of votes. Such was the impression of his sincerity and leadership. Through gerrymandering, however, he was precluded from becoming the prime minister of Malta.

The rest is history.

Without any doubt, Dr Fenech Adami when looking at the mirror, he will see the face of one who had given all he could for his country and its people.

That he is a great statesman is not only recognised by his supporters and his political opponents, but by the European community as well. Honours were heaped upon him. Ad multos annos!

Today, the NP has a certain Dr Adrian Delia, who only attained 68% of votes from the general council members. Recently, in a survey, Dr Delia was said to have the confidence of 52% (or thereabouts) of the members of the NP. Hurrah! He may feel satisfied and relieved that after what has been said about his leadership, both from within and without, he still managed to convince this percentage of members to give him their confidence. Now this calls for some reflection.

How were the telephone numbers of the members leaked to the media? Isn’t there a law against this?

Were there members among those questioned that became members after Dr Delia was elected leader?

Does this figure truly reflect the opinion of the Party members and/or the Nationalists in general?

Now let us suppose that Dr Delia also looks into the mirror. What will his face reveal? What will Delia feel by his reflection? What will we deduce from it?

If Dr Delia were to brush away his self-importance he would conclude that he hasn’t done much so far. Not only that he is a negative catalyst which is leading to the Party’s atrophy but he still persists in his errors; the latest one was when he threw down the gauntlet to ‘rebels’, i.e. those who want to oust him from the leadership. The ‘either’/’or’ attitude does not auger well. This is the tactic of despots. Is this what democracy is all about?

More. He has not done one iota to lift the Party from its present stagnation. Going round on Sundays to give a speech to a handful of people (candidates and MPs included) will never raise any hope and will never encourage anyone.

The face will tell him that with him as leader, the NP will be annihilated in the next General Election. The face will tell him that the NP will suffer the most devastating and humiliating defeat ever. But then a sliver of light will slightly illuminate the face of Dr Delia. Wasn’t it the deputy leader Robert Arrigo who said that the general Election will serve as a yardstick? Ergo, there is still hope of some sort to save his skin.

Moreover, the Labour Party are happy with his tenure of Leader of the Opposition – with the blessing of the Prime Minister Dr Robert Abela. The small beam soon disappears. Apparently, the Prime Minister’s positive remarks about him are nothing less than the executioner’s praise for his victim’s neck.

Remember the thousands upon thousands that used to flock at the Granaries in Floriana on the eve of the 21st of September, being Malta’s Independence Day? Last year (2019) the party opted for a corner meeting in front of the party headquarters. Why? Because the face will tell us, now, that Dr Delia knows the thousands have dwindled to hundreds. The face will tell that the more he stays on the more harm is done. The face will be a reflection of frustration and desperation. What else can it be?

And when he moves away from the mirror, he does not see his face anymore. Perhaps in his heart of hearts he hopes that, as Mr Micawber said, ‘something will always turn up’. Of course, he knows that Mr Micawber is a fictitious character but that does not worry him in the least. However, the thousands of Nationalists who will not be voting in the coming General Election also know that Dr Adrian Delia in the capacity of Leader of the Nationalist Party is as fictitious as Mr Micawber.