The Nationalist Party performed poorly during the last general election losing more votes than Labour did. There are two main reasons why the Nationalist Party can not recover to previous relative highs.
Firstly, the Nationalist Party is scarred by a history of corruption and bad governance. Sure, one would claim that it is nothing in comparison to Labour’s Mafia State but people can’t seem to trust the Nationalist Party on good governance either. What is more problematic I think is that the Nationalist Party is in its ideological and political nature very conservative and this goes against the current demographic trend. Adrian Delia seems to have taken the role of representing the most conservative faction in the Party, now claiming to be against embryo genetic testing. These conservative positions will only further divide the Nationalist Party and push it further to insignificance.
Labour is taking huge advantage of PN’s conservative and outdated ideas as they serve as a diversion from the meaningful and much-needed political discourse that we need today. Instead of discussing our economy, the Mafia State, and the continuing collapse of rule of law, Labour projects itself as the progressive party as it fights for civil rights that young generations take for granted.
During the last general election, more than 50,000 voters refused to vote. This alienated group of voters will only increase as Labour continues the road of wrecking our country with corruption and jungle rules. And as the Nationalist Party fails to position itself as the forward-looking visionary in the political race for power, it may continue to bleed more votes.
On the other hand, the formation of a new leading force to the Opposition is hampered by the lack of new leaders who are ready to take the risk and challenge Labour’s hegemony. One thing which is also contributing to this problem is the leadership of the Green Party. Carmel Cacopardo, the leader of the Greens has failed to revive the Green Party and his way of leadership has alienated many potential allies. Cacopardo even forced out of the Green Party long-time militants like Arnold Cassola who ended up contesting the general election as an independent. Cacopardo, today is refusing to step down as leader of the Greens hampering new blood to take over the Party and revive it. Green loyalists feel they have no other option but to follow Cacopardo so as not to keep fracturing the already badly fractured Party. Cacopardo is being selfish, vain and arrogant. He should accept defeat and step aside so as to allow the rejuvenation of a new Opposition.