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GG AKEL: We do not rule out our own candidacy

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GG AKEL: We do not rule out our own candidacy

Frixos Dalitis

It draws the lines on which AKEL will move in the run-up to the presidential elections and sends strong messages to the opposition parties that the position for a change of government is not enough. AKEL Secretary General Stefanos Stefanou emphasizes that this position should be the motivation for excesses so that there are collaborations.

In this dialogue and in this process, he emphasizes that there is no pre-exclusion of a potential candidate, including himself. At the same time, he states clearly and unequivocally to everyone that the time has passed when AKEL supported only others, so the name of his secretary general and another member or executive of the Left party can fit in the nomenclature equation.

Stefanos Stefanou reiterates categorically that AKEL's unchanging goal is for the Democratic Alarm government to leave power because, as he states, in the nine years of its rule it has led Cyprus to the bottom with many impasses to plague the country and society. .

SEE ALSO: S. Charalambous: “My soul is in PEO”

It outlines the profile of the candidate that AKEL is looking for in the presidential elections in the context and the desire for party cooperation, explaining the basic principles he must have as a personality. At the same time, however, he explains that the candidate should have positions that are close to AKEL positions. “To have positions that in key issues converge with ours, to be honest and credible and to have prospects of eligibility”, he states characteristically.

He also talks about the various names and the scenario that is developing in relation to the presidential elections and comments on the possibility of supporting a candidacy of Nikolas Papadopoulos, George Pamporidis or Nikos Christodoulidis.

It also refers to the party processes for the selection of the candidate, the contacts with the other parties and the party schedules in relation to the decisions for the presidential elections.

– Where is the issue of presidential elections at AKEL at the moment and what are the timetables you have set?

– As you know, in AKEL we follow a process that involves the party as a whole, the New Forces and the friends of the Party. It is not one or the few who decide and the others follow. We have started the discussion, a reflection in the upper bodies of AKEL and then we will go to the Central Committee and the Base Party Groups. Next we will evaluate the discussion that will take place at the Base at the level of the Central Committee. The final decisions will be taken at a Pancyprian Conference, as provided by the Party Statute. Our goal is for the final decisions to be made in the spring.

You realize, of course, that schedules do not depend entirely on us. They are influenced by the general developments, the course of contacts and discussions with other political forces and social forces and personalities, the actions and decisions of our political opponents. The political and electoral scene is fluid and we must monitor it closely and act accordingly. We are not out of time and we are not late.

– What is the profile of the candidate you are looking for and what are the red lines of AKEL for a program of cooperation with other opposition parties?

– Your question refers to the two main components of an electoral battle for the presidency. The program positions and the person. These two components are interrelated. The progressive change we seek has content and specifications. It includes positions on the basic issues that determine the course of the place, society, economy. AKEL seeks convergence on these issues, which will allow the building of collaborations. We have always sought them for cooperation in the presidential elections, we will seek them now, exhausting every opportunity and every margin we have at our disposal. The unchanging goal is for the DISY government to leave. This is because in the nine years of its rule it has led Cyprus to the bottom with many impasses plaguing the country and society. The situation is no longer going on and that is why DISY must leave power. Of course, the person who leads the electoral effort always enters the equation of the elections and plays a decisive role in the development and the end of the effort. The candidate's profile must have several characteristics. The main thing is to have positions that in key issues converge with ours, to be honest and credible and to have prospects of eligibility.

– Where are the processes with other parties and how difficult or easy is a cooperation with some parties? Is the common position simply enough for the need for change?

– The processes have not progressed yet. In order to move forward, first of all, the parties must be ready and know how and how far they can move. At least that's true of us. How difficult or easy it will be to achieve collaborations will be seen in practice. That is, the time when the contacts and discussions will take place. However, the fact that other political forces share AKEL's position that the country is at the bottom because of the policies of the DISY government, then objectively there is a strong basis to support the joint effort to achieve change in the country. Not only the position for the need for change is enough, but the realization of this need is an incentive for everyone to go beyond it, which will lead to building partnerships.

– Is your name or not finally on the table for the presidency and what conditions are set by AKEL regarding the nomenclature?

– I have stated it again, I will state it now: we do not rule out the possibility of having a candidate from the AKEL field, including the AKEL secretary general. Gone are the days when AKEL only supported others. In such a case, however, we will again put down all the data to see how the electoral goal is better served, which is to win and achieve change. I will not go into the nomenclature, I will only dwell on the criteria we mentioned earlier regarding collaborations and persons.

– Is the issue of eligibility the first on the agenda of the criteria for the AKEL candidate and for a possible cooperation?

– Of course eligibility is an important criterion, but not the only one. If eligibility was the only criterion, we would not put down the various criteria that a person must meet in order to run in an election, nor would we talk about the need for convergence on key governance issues. We would find a person who is just elected and we would put him. The candidate's positions on the key issues that determine the course of the country are always in the criteria that determine our decisions.

– Would you rule out the name of party chairman in the context of a coalition of opposition parties? For example, Nikolas Papadopoulos?

– We said that we start without pre-exclusions. At the same time, however, we made it clear that we would not engage in a public debate on names before entering into a debate with other political forces on the presidential election. And because names come and go in the media, I want to reiterate that we did not discuss any name with any political force. We did not discuss this within the Party here. When and if we will have the meetings, we will tell our positions and opinions to our potential partners and then we will discuss names.

– From DIKO's point of view, the candidacy of Nikola Papadopoulos is the most probable scenario, unless they say if there is another name with more eligibility on the table. What is your answer?

– I do not know who is saying these things, but so much is being said that no one knows what the real concerns are and what the real positions of the parties are on the presidential election. If face-to-face meetings are not held to clarify positions, I am not going to comment or comment in public. The public debate over theoretical scenarios is confusing and disorienting from focusing on the main goal of achieving change. That is why I will insist on my approach not to comment.

“We haven't discussed names yet…”

– Various names were heard and written as possible candidates of AKEL. How close or far in reality are these scenarios always at the basis of the AKEL process?

– You are right to say that they are heard and written for different names. You journalists do your job! I do not remember any presidential elections without a script and a nomenclature. And now we are spectators in the same work. What is being said about potential AKEL candidates does not correspond to reality. And how to respond when we have not yet discussed names. And I will add to this that when and if we start discussing names in AKEL, nothing will be final unless the party procedures provided in our Statute are completed and the final decisions are taken collectively.

– For example, could a former minister of the current government be a candidate of AKEL? And the question specifically concerns George Pamporidis, whose name is heard by some circles?

– I understand the effort to make news but I will not violate what I am first obliged to observe and demand from everyone else. I wonder if I start violating what I demand from the members and friends of AKEL, that is, to respect the party procedures, what message I would send and what legitimacy I would then have to continue to demand.

There is pressure on DISY…

– A possible independent candidacy of Nikos Christodoulidis could occupy AKEL? And why;

– How can a possible candidacy of Nikos Christodoulidis be independent, when he himself in an interview in your newspaper just a few days ago, at Christmas, claims that “I am in DISY from the youth until today”. How can he convince himself that he is independent when he says that “I listen to the society, my party, as of course the base of the party”. Will N. Christodoulidis suddenly become independent? The transformation of N. Christodoulidis into an independent candidate is, in keeping with the proportions, such as the declaration of Averof Neophytos that he will save the place at a time when he has been supporting the government for nine years.

– Is it true that there was some pressure from the AKEL world towards the party leadership to move quickly in response to Averof Neophytou's announcement?

– There is no pressure on AKEL that exists. It is on DISY that exists because of the tug-of-war between Averof Neophytou and Nikos Christodoulidis. Just because Neophytou rushed to catch up with Christodoulidis and put pressure on him, does not mean that we were late. We are proceeding according to the schedule we have drawn up. Based on our initial plan, we continue to discuss the political framework, to address the political forces of the opposition to discuss the possibility of cooperation, to discuss the person who will lead this effort.

Source: www.philenews.com

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