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Simon Busuttil this evening appealed to “hurt Nationalists” who had voted Labour in 2013 to put their country first on June 3.

“I want to appeal to Nationalists, who in the last election decided to vote Labour because they were truly hurt, to vote for Forza Nazzjonali.

“I understand their pain, which I believe they are right to feel, and I know it’s a difficult thing that I am asking from you,” he said at a mass meeting in the Labour-stronghold of Żabbar.

He meanwhile appealed to “hurt Labourites”, who have been betrayed. We are not fighting the Labour Party, but a three-man clique, Dr Busuttil insisted.

“I also appeal to the thousands of floaters, who are proud to be independent of any party, as is their right, to join the Forza Nazzjonali and choose Malta.”

Earlier, Dr Busuttil thanked activists for heeding his appeal to come to the mass meeting armed with Maltese flags.

The Opposition leader referred to his call at Court this week, where he presented eight files of documents, which, he said, provided detailed proof of transactions involving the prime minister's chief of staff Keith Schembri and former Allied Newspapers managing director Adrian Hillman.

“I had to do it because we have an incapable Police Commissioner, a scared Attorney General and a Prime Minister who has lost all sense of decency when faced with corruption. I had to go to the magistrate myself with evidence.”

Watch: Busuttil presents eight files of 'irrefutable evidence' against Schembri

Meanwhile, referring to the so-called “Malta Files”, which has dominated the international media over the past hours, Dr Busuttil insisted that this was the result of a government that was not strong enough to clean the island’s name.

“How can someone tarnished with corruption tell them that we are not corrupt? We need someone new, determined, and willing to clean the political system in Malta once and for all.”

Read: Malta is a target for Italian mafia, Russia loan sharks, damning probe says

In his address, Dr Busuttil appealed to voters to overcome the fear triggered by “lies” about the consequences of electing a PN PD coalition.

“They are scaring people that we would ban fireworks… how is this possible when fireworks are part of our traditions?

“They are also scaring students that we would get rid of stipends: We gave you stipends, how can we take them back,” Dr Busuttil asked, insisting that his government would also build on LGBTIQ rights introduced by the current administration, and honour any overtime and pension agreement.

“We should not let fear overtake reason. Let’s overcome fear with truth,” he said.

Addressing the meeting ahead of Dr Busuttil, former Alternattiva Demokratika chairman Michael Briguglio insisted that voting Forza Nazzjonali was the only way to get rid of Joseph Muscat.

“I am here because I want to live in a normal country, and not a corrupt one,” Dr Briguglio said.

Faced with the mess that Malta was in, Dr Briguglio felt he had to take action and speak out, and he was proud that he would be voting the PN PD coalition.

This was the only way to get rid of the “Panama gang”, and he was placing his trust within Dr Busuttil, Dr Briguglio said.

I can assure you, he said, that Dr Busuttil was a leader who listened to all, not just two people around him. He was a determined leader with a social conscience, he added. The PN leader would help the country regain the respect that it once had.

On the other hand, Joseph Muscat behaved like a bully and was scared of the Mr Schembri and Minister Konrad Mizzi. He called an early election to save himself, Mr Schembri and Mr Mizzi.

“Who is the Prime Minister? Joseph or Keith? I think it is Keith…. The problem is that no one elected Keith,” Dr Briguglio told those present.

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