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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-01-18

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PASOK plan vs corruption to President

  • [01] PASOK plan vs corruption to President

    Widespread phenomena of corruption evident in public life dominated talks held on Friday by main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou and President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias. The meeting was requested by Papandreou, who stressed that these were difficult times and that the Greek people were shocked by developments, with corruption being an undermining factor targeting democratic institutions, the credibility of the political system and the self-confidence of the Greek people. Papandreou underlined the need for solutions, pointing out that this was the reason for his meeting with the President, in order to seek his advice and contribution. On his part, President Papoulias told Papandreou that his request for a meeting was a well-thought-out decision. During the meeting, Papandreou delivered a memorandum in which he outlined his proposed plan for combatting corruption. Papandreou called on the President to convene a meeting of the political party leaders in order to adopt these proposals or even formulate additional ones. In statements he made after the meeting that lasted over an hour, Papandreou stressed that his proposals are designed to combat the generalized crisis in values, moral degradation and corruption. He stressed that the government is part of the crisis producing scandals and corruption. Papandreou stated that a Constitutional revision is not necessary in order to deal with corruption issues, stressing that political will is imperative in such cases and accusing Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis of lacking the same. The leader of PASOK stated that his proposals include the establishment of a mandatory phase of public dialogue on all draft laws before being tabled in parliament, monitoring of budget implementation by a special parliamentary committee and reinforcement of the Supreme Staff Selection Council (ASEP) procedures in the appointment of public employees. Also, all transactions and decisions by state officials concerning supplies, tenders and funding should be made public on the internet, while all government ministry special accounts should be abolished. Papandreou called for the establishment of a parliamentary special permanent committee on armaments' programmes, strict control on political funds, mass media transparency, establishment of a national transparency council and corruption prevention institutions at a local level, as well as adoption of an election system based on the German model to safeguard the autonomy of the political system. Government's reply to Papandreou Responding to the main opposition leader's statements, alternate government spokesman Evangelos Antonaros dismissed them as "play-acting and hypocrisy" and stressed that Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis had stated his position in such a way as to leave no doubt about the government's stance or intentions. Regarding Papandreou's proposal for a meeting of the party leaders' under the president, meanwhile, Antonaros said that the prime minister was at the disposal of any political party leader that wanted to present proposals on any issue. "On issues of transparency, the government has steadily and unswervingly for about four years reinforced transparency in the public sector with proposals, initiatives and laws," the spokesman said. In addition, during the process begun by the government for revising the Constitution that was now in its final stages, specific proposals for protecting transparency had been made, he added and urged PASOK to take part in the revision process. Antonaros also underlined his faith that justice would uncover the truth about the latest scandal involving the former culture ministry general secretary Christos Zachopoulos, in response to a question noting that justice had failed to find the culprits in similar high-profile cases of the past. "We support [justice] and let it do its work. Justice works and must work independently in our country," he noted.
    Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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