– Had stopped turning up for meetings to signal his intents –
Former head of Media.link, Pierre Portelli, has quit the Partit Nazzjonalista (PN) in a formal letter of resignation he sent to the executive’s president, Alex Perici Calascione. Portelli stated that if his absences for meetings had not been clear enough as a signal of intents, he was now formally resigning.
A long standing figure in the PN scene, Portelli had been appointed head of Media.Link by the former leader, Dr. Adrian Delia, a role when he then relinquished in 2019. After that, in June that year, he launched a scathing attack on members of the PN’s parliamentary group. Prior to his stint at Media.Link’s headship, Portelli was also editorial director of The Malta Independent. He is widely credited to have been the agent moteur who encouraged Dr. Delia to stand for the PN leadership contest.
Portelli’s resignation from the PN’s executive came after a meeting with the party’s new leader, Dr. Bernard Grech. In his resignation letter, Portelli wrote “I’m asking you to accept my resignation so that no one will use me to cause damage to the PN in light of recent stories that relate to the time when I was the executive chairman of Media.Link.”
“I reserve the right to reply to these stories when I feel it is the right time, however, I don’t want people who harbour ill intent to use such stories to damage the party,” the letter reads.
Portelli was in the eye of the storm when last year his name was brought up in Court, when it was alleged by former chief of staff Keith Schembri that the PN used to send its head of media to collect €20,000 every month from Yorgen Fenech.
When promptly denying the claim, Portelli produced a notarised sworn statement to that effect. A denial was also issued by Dr. Adrian Delia.
Over the past week, local webnews portal Lovin Malta reported that Pierre Portelli had reached out to Yorgen Fenech, so as to ensure that an article claiming that the PN’s youth wing had been taken over by anti-corruption groups like Occupy Justice, was published in Labour Party-leaning media, following their calls for then-leader Adrian Delia to resign.