The Labour Party (PL) has declared victory in the 2023 European Parliament elections; however the governing party is expected to see its majority slashed and lose out on the fourth seat it won in 2019.

In comments, Prime Minister Robert Abela remarked that the party achieved a “solid victory”, while also acknowledging that “messages were sent”, further indicating that Labour’s once seemingly invincible majority has been heavily reduced.

Malta’s major political parties made their predictions after reviewing preliminary vote-counting samples, with the Nationalist Party’s (PN) television station, NET, claiming the majority would fall to below 20,000.

PN Secretary General Michael Piccinino later said the gap would fall to 15,000, describing it as the party’s “best electoral result ever” in European elections.

In 2019, the last European Parliament elections, Labour won by a staggering 42,656 votes, comfortably taking the fourth seat out of a possible six. Before that, in 2014, Labour won by over 33,677 votes, but the PN’s Therese Comodini Cachia secured the PN’s third seat after an extremely close race.

Exact figures won’t be known until later on Sunday as votes are still being processed at the Naxxar counting hall, currently swarming with delegates of both major parties, as well as those of smaller parties and independent candidates.

The 2024 MEP elections in Malta were marked by increased interest in several independent candidates, which made up 13 of a total pool of 39 MEP candidates.

Arnold Cassola was seen to have made significant inroads in the lead up to the election, and it remains unclear if he will manage to secure a seat, or if the third of six seats will go to the PN.

PN star candidate and EP President Roberta Metsola is expected to break records with a huge number of votes, with some saying she is expected to win two quotas. Her term as President comes to an end on 17th July, and a strong victory for her party, the EPP, could see her return for a second term as President.

Of the PL candidates, Alex Agius Saliba is expected to win the most votes by a solid margin.

Featured Image:

Naxxar Counting Hall / DOI Photo – Omar Camilleri

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