Gonzi calls for calm,

good natured celebrations

Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi has made his first public appearance since the Nationalist Party declared its election victory yesterday.

He appeared on the balcony of the newly-built PN headquarters to acknowledge the cheers and applause of hundreds of supporters who crammed the square in front of the headquarters. A banner hanging from the balcony carried Dr Gonzi’s picture and “Grazzi” (thank you).

Dr Gonzi was accompanied by his wife Kate and their children, deputy leader Tonio Borg and general secretary Joe Saliba.

Many supporters had earlier made their way to Valletta where they expected Dr Gonzi to be sworn in, but the ceremony was put off when it was decided that since the PN had not won an absolute majority of votes, the swearing-in ceremony should follow the completion of the vote-counting process.

In a few comments, Dr Gonzi thanked the people, saying he especially wanted to thank youths. This victory, he said, would enable them to continue to work for the benefit of the country. He thanked all the PN candidates, party activists and helpers.

He also thanked the media, including opposition media, saying, using the election slogan, that together, everything was possible.

The people had shown great maturity, and all, even those who voted for the MLP, should feel proud, he said.

Dr Gonzi said celebrations should be calm and good natured and said the PN would hold a mass meeting tomorrow at 6 p.m. on the granaries. Dr Gonzi will this afternoon be meeting suporters in Gozo. The swearing-in ceremony is expected to take place tomorrow.

Picture: Darrin Zammit Lupi.

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