A week has passed since the day Malta paused to vote for the next legislation’s leaders, and as I suspected, the Nationalist Party has won again. A narrow margin, to be true, but a victory nonetheless. As far as I can remember, since 1976 to this day, there has only been one Labour majority, and that was in 1996, when it was followed by a very short but intense(ly disruptive) twenty-two months of misguided leadership.
So, now that the dust has settled, I am attempting to write down a bit of what has been going on.
93% of the voters turned out to vote on what was a really cold and wet day. I don’t think that the rain stopped at all, or if it did, it was only to give us some respite. The figure was a low one which augured well for the MLP but not the PN. You see, there are certain causes that the parties are not willing to officially state their case upon, but are known anyhow. Everybody knows that mostly PN is against Spring Hunting, and have been so since the start. MLP, on the other hand, while not saying that they will ban hunting in spring, have quietly announced that they will follow the EU’s directive on this ban. Now, I have friends in the know who say that the Trapper’s association is mostly Labour supporters with a minority of nationalists, but still reaching the 35% mark. These guys don’t just vote themselves, they even COERCE their spouses and children to vote for their cause…so yes, I can say that the nationalists lost a huge number of votes from the trapping section.
There was also the case of the JPO ‘ordeal’, as he was accused of screwing about on an area of land which is outside building permit boundaries.(I don’t know who is right or wrong here, but a LOT of voters lost their nerve because of this.)
This caused a bit of concern, because the last time round PN had a 12k vote cushion. So, with 5k votes not being picked up and another 4k lost through the trappers doing, the advantage had slipped down to a bare minimum of 2k votes. Hardly enough to rest your head on the pillow without thinking about it.
The polling booths remained open up to 11pm instead of 10pm, due to the inclement weather and the local councils election voting. Fine by me.
So 93% it was, with Labour already daring to proclaim a hopeful victory.
If anybody asks me to spell the word ‘tense’ for him, it would go like this…’S-U-N-D-A-Y’ .. There you go…’tense’.
The ballot boxes were still being opened and the votes being put face-down by 10am , but in the vicinity of Paola, a huge noise of fireworks, car-horns and whistles was being heard. I stared in amazement when I got up on the roof to see what was happening.
There in the middle of the square, it was jam-packed with Labour supporters, celebrating a victory which was still not even plausible, let alone probable!
I called a mate of mine, ‘K’ to enquire what was going on.
K – ‘It’s a whitewash…17,000 to 22,000 advantage to us, we’re going to celebrate.’
Me- ‘How can that be? The ballot boxes are not even all open yet!’
K – ‘Already worked out man. Jas told me.’
And that my friends, is the Labour mentality.
How can even one begin to celebrate a mighty victory when the match hasn’t even started? How can one proclaim a victory against a formidable football team when you are still in the dressing rooms? And how, for God’s sake can one shout about an election victory when the votes have not been counted yet? Yes…a Labour mentality.
Obviously, within a couple of hours at 12.30 came the cold shock I had been waiting for. Official sampling results had been creeping out. The nationalists were 2000 votes to the good. I stepped out on the roof again…
Ah…all was silent again on the Labour front.
Not for long though. I could see the Nationalist Party club being thrown wide open with people jumping up and down and screaming in delight. But this time the laughter and celebrations did not die out.
I can say that our little island held its breath in a collective effort, as even more samples were being taken and discarded as being ‘too close to call’.
Finally, on TV I could see the PN supporters at the counting hall in Naxxar erupting in joy and banging against the perspex partitions. I felt immediately that victory had finally arrived. Not because Dr.Gonzi had been elected in that particular district, but the amount of votes he garnered made sure that there was no way his party could be reached.
I slumped down on my chair, worn out with fatigue and relief. Funny really, because I have never ever been a political creature. Also I am of the firm opinion of having alternate governments every 7-8 years. But there’s something I don’t like at all about labour. More on that later too…
Finally at 9.22 sharp, PN spokesman Joe Saliba uttered the magic words we have all been waiting for.’From first indications, it seems that the Nationalist Party have won the election.’
That was that! I must confess to dancing and jumping with relief. We all went down to Paola after that, to witness celebrations galore. After all the tension, the people had a right to enjoy themselves and let out steam.
Shhh…..the sheer silence of a country suffering from post-dramatic stress disorder.
I refused to let an election disrupt my work habits, so I went to work just like any normal day. And here is where I feel our population has to mature. Okay, we might get carried away with our enthusiasm, but after all is said and done, it is just a democratic selection by the people. I’m sure that the MLP want as much improvement for the Maltese people as the Nationalists. It’s just the way some differences crop up and are tackled that is the real issue here.
So yes, it was a very quiet day, even here at work, where the relief was palpable. Our ‘traditional’ daily walk around the industrial was eerily different. Damn…even the guard dogs were silent today. Nary a car in the entire estate, except our car-park.
Meanwhile around Pieta’ tens of thousands of PN supporters gathered around the party headquarters to render homage to their leader and yet another victory.
At last it was all over bar the shouting…or the swearing-in. That was on Tuesday.
Wow…what a long post…hehe…and I still haven’t written in with my opinions yet…but I think I will leave that out for today. I will post later on in the day or tomorrow, when I have gathered some more musings.
As always….keep METAL \m/