Voting doesn’t make us feel tired!

30.08.2015 - Marianella Kloka

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Voting doesn’t make us feel tired!
Photo of an assembly in Syntagma Square, June 2011

The Popular Unity party handed the mandate to try to form a government back to the President of the Greek Republic, and a transitional government was formed by the President of the Court of Cassation, Vassiliki Thanou-Christophilou and her new cabinet is obliged to lead the country to snap democratic elections on 20 September 2015.

Mr Juncker “furiously” sent a message to the Prime Minister, in which besides the customary congratulations found in such letters, wrote: “As the Greek Republic has signed the Memorandum of Understanding on a new stability program of support from the European Stability Mechanism, the European partners and the European Commission itself consider as essential the full support of the program. For its long-term success broad support and on time implementation of reforms is required”. At the same time he reminded her that the EU has helped Greece to address the “unprecedented migration flows” and declared his availability to assist in her new duties.

Today the internal procedures in many political parties, and primarily in SYRIZA, concluded. From the results of these processes, nomination lists will be prepared and will depend, as they themselves say, on the participation of important personalities in the upcoming elections. Simultaneously, all parties are moving strategically as deadlines are tight with suffocating bureaucratic procedures.

Parliament completed its mandate with a significant omission. Former Finance Minister and current Governor of the Bank of Greece, Yannis Stournaras declined to accept the invitation by Zoi Konstantopoulou, the president of the Transparency Committee, to testify about the Siemens scandal*, claiming his schedule was too heavy. He did however declare his availability to participate in a new committee with a new composition resulting from the current national elections. In any case, the last meeting of the Committee encountered problems to reach a quorum.

The Greek people are exhausted by the uncertainty and abuse as a result of misinformation, fear and propaganda. My personal assessment is that people do not feel abused either by the fact that two months ago we had a referendum or by the fact that their opinion and their vote is being asked for once again. A large portion of the people value democratic processes and want to make more use of them. The problem is when -in many cases- the regime of parliamentary democracy is raped, abused and is stripped of its value. The problem is when the outcome of a referendum is not respected, when attempting a debate on scandals is avoided, as well as when a legislative proposal of 900 pages passes overnight because there is a Eurogroup meeting the next day.

The gap left behind after this abuse makes us think about the next day, while a part of the people, to which I certainly refer, are unwilling to give up on democracy and stand aside as Golden Dawn’s popularity rises. They wish to give a new proposal to mankind. Is there room for parliamentary democracy to breathe again? If not, what is the next chapter in the history of democracy?

*The Siemens’ scandal is a big case in which politicians are alleged to have behaved corruptly in contracts between the Greek government and Siemens during the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Categories: Europe, Opinions, Politics
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