Communist Party of Malta

  • 11/29/13 3:47 PM


In Malta a Communist Party did not exist before 1969. Secret Communist cells existed in various periods from the 1920's onwards, always small in number. Maltese communists militated either in the English CPGB, the Italian PCI, or worked undercover within the Malta Labour Party, which was infiltrated by the catholic clergy preventing this party from taking a Marxist line, One notorious infiltrator was Mgr. Michael Gonzi, the future Archbishop of Malta who was a faithful servant of the British Crown.

The witch hunts that were conducted culminated in the sedition trails of 1933 where a number of dockyard workers and intellectuals were imprisoned for the crime of possessing classical Marxist literature. A party operating under legality could not exist before 1971, not under the direct British Colonial rule, neither under the first Nationalist Administration after the 1964 independence.

In the last days of the Nationalist administration an underground Party was setup through the activism of Paul Agius who had returned to Malta, from Australia, along with other Maltese comrades founded the Communist Party of Malta This event took place in1969. The Party came out into the open after the Labour Party victory at the polls. The Party Membership started to grow Lillian Schiberras Anthony Vassallo, Anthony Baldachinno and others. Evarist Bartolo, Mario Vella, and Alfred Consiglio were amongst the early members.

The Communist Party was not prepared to contest the General Elections in 1976 and in 1979 was in support of the closing down of all the military bases in Malta. In 1981.for various reasons found itself unprepared, could not contest in the general elections. During the 1980's the party embarked on the road towards the next electoral campaign. The party started to publish a monthly newspaper "Zminijietna" and started to prepare for the eventuality of contesting. The Party was now going through its golden age as membership started to grow and things were looking up. On the eve of the 1987 elections Dom Mintoff who had resigned from the post of Prime Minister, was now a backbencher, but held great influence within the Labour administration. He proposed amendments to the Maltese constitution, which were accepted unanimously. The electoral rules were changed to suit the two party system and it resulted that small parties now had no chance of surmounting the unofficial 17% threshold. The Central Committee failed to read the writing on the wall, failed to withdraw from the fray, and contested the 1987 elections with disastrous results. After this debacle, the party went into a period of decline. The events in Eastern Europe of 1989 continued to give the party further blows, where now it was a struggle to survive and keep its archives.

In the mid 1990’s the party slowly started again on the road of being active once again, and slowly we the party is increasing its membership.

The party has a blog: and can be contacted on and