A Labour billboard targeting a journalist has been replaced, Prime Minister Robert Abela said on Saturday.  

The billboard in question featured the face of Manuel Delia alongside various Nationalist Party figures and was roundly condemned both locally and overseas, by international press organisations. 

Taking reporters’ questions on Saturday, Abela did not comment on the content of the controversial political advert, but said that it has been taken down and replaced with another “more important message”.  

A video campaign with the same message, which also features Delia, is still on the PL’s Facebook page.

The new billboard that has replaced the offensive one. Photo: Chris Sant FournierThe new billboard that has replaced the offensive one. Photo: Chris Sant Fournier

The billboard and video describe PN leader Bernard Grech as "the face of the past", with a number of Nationalist MPs appearing in the background. Delia, who ran as a PN candidate in 2013 but is now unaffiliated, also featured.  

It has been replaced with one which claims that the PN will slash aid to people living in properties subject to pre-1995 rents. 

The PN has denied this claim. 

On Wednesday, the Institute for Maltese Journalists (IĠM) was critical of the billboard featuring Delia and said it was concerned that “once again” a journalist is being singled out because of their work. 

Assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia had also featured in Labour propaganda before she was killed in 2017.  

The billboard also drew condemnation from international NGO Reporters Without Borders which this week urged the PL to remove it from the island’s streets.  

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