President Vella likely to stay put after end of term

Tista taqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti.

President George Vella could remain in office beyond his five-year term as no discussions have started between the government and the opposition on who should take over the position in April 2024.

Prime Minister Robert Abela is responsible for initiating talks to find a replacement with the Nationalist Party opposition, but it is believed that this process has not yet started, despite there being four months until Vella’s term expires.

President Vella’s term ends in April, and usually, talks would be in full swing so close to the president’s end of term. Due to a change in the law on the president’s appointment, such talks are more urgent since the prime minister no longer has the option to appoint a president with a simple majority.

In 2020, following pressure from the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission, the Constitution was amended so that the president’s appointment requires a two-thirds majority in parliament.

There is also no deadlock system in place, meaning the incumbent president will remain in the role until the ruling party and the opposition agree on a new one.

In this case, Abela cannot repeat his move when appointing his man as the standards commissioner, where he changed the law to get his way.

Unlike the nomination of the standards commissioner, where the prime minister changed the law so that he could install his candidate, Joseph Azzopardi, the 2020 amendments are entrenched in the constitution, meaning the government cannot change the rules without a two-thirds majority.

So far, the prime minister has been tight-lipped about his intentions. However, there is speculation he favours university lecturer Frank Bezzina, but this is unlikely to enjoy support from the opposition.

Bezzina, the acting president when Vella travelled abroad, has little experience and was used by the prime minister to sign the controversial IVF reform law as Vella planned a trip outside the country to avoid signing it himself.

For the past 15 years, Malta has had three consecutive Labour presidents, with the prime minister’s father, George Abela, appointed by a PN administration, and Marie Louise Coleiro Preca preceding George Vella.

The role of the president of Malta is symbolic, as the role enjoys no executive powers.

                           

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saviour mamo
saviour mamo
2 months ago

Robert Abela can always appoint a person he favours as Acting President, like Pawlu Xuereb.

KLAUS
KLAUS
2 months ago

OMG. Don’t they have any respect for age? This old man should have been in an old people’s home for many years.

makjavel
makjavel
2 months ago

Robert Abela will consult Muscat and decide to put Michelle as president. Botox and all, ready for the Photo Sessions under the excuse that it is about time to have a female as president. Then change the national anthem to Don’t Cry for me Laburisti,

R Agius
R Agius
2 months ago

Aw gawd…the most useless head of state ever.

VCZ
VCZ
2 months ago

“The role of the president of Malta is symbolic, as the role enjoys no executive powers.”
No, the President has executive powers in those cases where the Constitution empowers him to act in accordance with his own deliberate judgment.
I wish that the next President make it his to read the Constitution first thing every morning and to seek independent advice where in doubt.
That the President be not involved in anything other than constitutional matters.
The next President could be chosen from a short list of candidates proffered by the people.
That the next President be not a politician but a person held in esteem by the public at large.
That the President be source of national unity.
I hope that all this is not a pie in the sky, given the present state of affairs in the country.

Charles Falzon, Sliema
Charles Falzon, Sliema
2 months ago

Vażun tal-fjuri tal- plastic skont Dr Emmy Bezzina.

Joseph Tabone Adami
Joseph Tabone Adami
2 months ago

If the House cannot agree on finding a person who is prudent, upright and well-versed in Constitutional matters to occupy the highest public post in Malta, then one can reasonably arrive at one of two conclusions, if not both:-

a) No such person is to be found in this land, or
b) No agreement is really being sought.

In both cases, woe betide Malta and its citizens!

Philip Micalleg
Philip Micalleg
2 months ago

It is about time our leaders change their way of thinking and extend consultations to NGOs, civil society etc and opt for a person who can unite the Maltese and is a pro-active person who can steer our politicians into new ways of doing politics always looking into the future.

Mick
Mick
2 months ago

This person has not yet been born, we live amongst philistines and thieves

Maria C. Xuereb
Maria C. Xuereb
2 months ago

The greatest mistake the national party in power created Abel s father as president . A joke of a century.

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