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GSD and GSLP/Liberals sign up for election

Photos by Johnny Bugeja.

The GSD’s and GSLP/Liberals’ election candidates formally signed their nomination papers in Parliament on Wednesday.

Both parties unveiled their candidates this week ahead of the general election on October 12, with campaigning now in full swing.

On Wednesday morning, the GSD arrived in Parliament ahead of the deadline for the registration of candidates, which is set for midday on September 21.

The GSD slate includes its leader Keith Azopardi, Damon Bossino, Roy Clinton, Edwin Reyes, and new candidates Daniella Tilbury, Joelle Ladislaus, Youssef El Hana, Atrish Sanchez, Giovanni Origo, and Craig Sacarello.

Mr Azopardi told the Chronicle that the party felt confident and is entering the election with a momentum for change.

“I think there’s real traction for change out there,” Mr Azopardi said.

“I think Gibraltar really needs change and we want to deliver it. This is now effectively a two-horse race, given the pull-out of TG and I think that GSD have a fantastic chance to deliver the change that people want.”

The GSD has seen six new faces join their slate but, unlike the GSLP who have already pinpointed areas of focus for each candidate, Mr Azopardi said his candidates will not have specific responsibilities during their campaign.

A couple of hours later the GSLP/Liberals arrived in Parliament to sign on their 10 candidates, with the parties joined by their supporters.

The GSLP line-up includes its leader Fabian Picardo, Sir Joe Bossano, Dr John Cortes, and new candidates Christian Santos, Gemma Vasquez, Pat Orfila and Nigel Feetham.

“It’s always exciting and invigorating to actually sign on in Parliament,” Mr Picardo said.

“I’ve been in politics in Gibraltar for 30 years and I’ve been standing for elections since 2003.”

“I always get the same feeling of butterflies in my stomach when I finally sign the form, and I’m very much looking forward to campaigning.”

“I love campaigning. I enjoy elections.”

“This is a time when I can get out of my office and see people, the people who I’m serving, the people who I’m interviewing, who are interviewing me rather, for the post that I’m standing for.”

“So it's a great time to be alive and also quite the change as well, because of so many new candidates, half the team is new and half the team has been in government with us for the past 12 years.”

“So it’s a real opportunity to have continuity, experience and change all in the same line-up.”

The Liberal Party announced changes to its slate the evening before signing on, which now includes its leader Dr Joseph Garcia, Vijay Daryanani, and new candidate Leslie Bruzon.

After three terms in office, Steven Linares stepped down as an MP but was present to support the Liberal party during the signing on.

“Signing for election is always very exciting and this is my 9th election, but it feels just
as exciting as the first one did all those years ago,” Dr Garcia said.

“The fact that we have a line-up which includes experience and change within the line-up, I think, is very significant because we will be able to bring to offer the electorate continuity at the same time as we offer new faces and new people.”

“From our perspective, this election is about who you want to conclude the Brexit negotiations with the European Union.”

“We’re the ones who’ve been involved in the detail of every aspect of those negotiations, and we are the people who are best placed taking forward.”

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