Updated 3.40pm with Cassola's reaction

The Labour Party’s 11-seat majority has been reduced to nine as a result of a constitutional amendment designed to ensure that the number of MPs in parliament is proportional to the total share of votes the party received.

The Electoral Commission announced that PN candidates Toni Bezzina and newcomer Ian Vassallo were elected to fill the additional seats of Members of the House of Representatives according to the constitutional provision.

This means that while PL will retain its 38 seats, PN's have been increased to 29.

Bezzina, who served as an MP for the past legislatures, failed to get elected on his own steam this election. He contested the fifth electoral district and received just 762 first count votes.

At the end of the counting process, he was left unelected with 3,251 votes, short of the 3,799 quota he needed to get elected.

Vassallo contested the seventh district. He received 1,892 first-count votes. At the end of the counting process, he had 3,190 votes. The quota was set at 3,927.

The provision had also been used in the last general election and saw PN MPs Carm Mifsud Bonnici and Frederick Azzopardi gain a parliamentary seat.  

Cassola calls out 'anti-democratic' mechanism

Reacting to the PN's granting of two additional seats, independent candidate Arnold Cassola said the party was getting two extra seats "for nothing", while ADPD, who garnered nearly 5,000 first count votes was not allocated any seats.

"This is all the result of the legal gerrymandering by PN and PL who, through their presence in parliament, have always gerrymandered the electoral system in their favour. 

"Such anti-democratic behaviour must come to an end once and for all," he said in a statement.

Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.

Support Us