AKEL Conspiracy Revealed in Semi-Government Appointments
A government blunder unwittingly exposed to the press a conspiracy to appoint semi-government board members according to how 'friendly' they are to ruling party AKEL, and how leftist they are in their political beliefs.
The excel file reveals a shocking system of using AKEL informants to evaluate how supportive each board member would be towards the ruling party. The appointments are manipulated so that the majority of 153 public officials running such organisations as the Prison Services, and the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA), would be 'approved' by AKEL.
Below are verbatim comments taken from the file, which can be read here;
Stathis Kitis (chairman CYTA): "Centre left. Good relations." Reappointed.
Andreas Demetriou (Prisons service): "For a great part of the time he was not showing interest and wasn't coming to the meetings. But when necessary, he follows the party." Reappointed.
Each candidate was identified by the party to which he belongs and the comment '+' or '-' indicating whether the candidate was positive or negative towards AKEL. In the excel lists, the informant spying on each organisation's board was named and his telephone number provided. Around 52 of the 153 public officials belong clearly to AKEL or KOB (AKEL's base of supporters), and the rest are 'graded' as plus or minus towards the communist party.
There is also a reference to a new law before the Supreme Court which would limit a board member's tenure to two terms of 30 months and end currently serving board members service in March 2013 when presidential elections will be held. A comment at the bottom of the leaked document says: "Don't appoint any others in case the law changes. If appointed, their working relationship with the board will be cut off in the middle..."
Little reference was made to how effectively or knowledgeably the board members had governed the organisations, many of which are critical in state operations.
Opposition MP Haris Georgiades (DISY) said that AKEL wanted absolute control over the semi-government organisations and that the party had only proved its incompetence by sending the exposing file to the media. The story has been widely reported in most media outlets.
MP Marinos Sizopoulos (EDEK) said that the appointments system must be changed and reiterated EDEK's proposal that those interested in semi-government positions should submit an application and be assessed by the House of Representatives.
"We condemn as a breach of human rights and undermining of the personalities of tens of people, the procedure of judging the presidents and members of the board of semi-government organisations by the party and the government," said a spokeswoman for the Greens Party.
Moments before formally announcing the appointments, President Demetris Christofias said they were not made according to party lines, a statement that was turned into lies after the document was revealed by the press.
Government spokesman Stefanos Stefanou said it was an 'internal document' that found its way onto the mailing lists.
The president and the Council of Ministers appoint the top level officials in the semi-government organisations.
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