Malta’s President Leads Consultation on Possible March 9 Vote

Malta’s President George Abela will hold talks with political parties on the timing of general elections after Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi said Parliament will be dissolved and the vote may be held in March.

The parliament will be dissolved in January and elections may be held on March 9, Gonzi told reporters in Valletta yesterday after a meeting with Abela. The premier, 59, sought to fix the election date after being defeated last night in a vote on his budget law in parliament. Lawmakers, including Gonzi’s ally Franco Debono, voted 35 to 34 against the government.

The opposition Democratic Party agreed with Gonzi that the parliament will be dissolved on Jan. 7, its head Joseph Muscat told journalists in Valletta after talks with Abela. He declined to comment on the date of the vote, adding that “the President will make his own judgement on what is to be done.”

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