The appointment of the former Minister of Education, until recently, Commissioner for the Development of Mountain Communities, Kostas Hambiauris, to the Education Service Committee was not viewed favorably by various bodies, mainly educators, but also political parties.
Mr. Hambiauri's relations with the educational organizations had deteriorated since he was Minister of Education, since in 2018 the relations between them were the ones that rekindled the crisis in the Education sector, with protest marches.
His strong reaction was expressed by AKEL, which in its statement notes that his appointment to the Commission is another bad example of the recycling of persons in public positions. “It is also a typical example of alarming the institutions and the state, which Nikos Anastasiadis imposes even now at the end of his term”, it states.
At the same time, AKEL emphasizes that “above all, this appointment constitutes a direct challenge to the entire educational world and Cypriot society as a whole. Mr. Hambiauri's tenure at the Ministry of Education was linked to his conflict with all the local teachers, who found themselves in the streets by the thousands reacting to the unprecedented insults against them. Instead of those who fail in their mission going home, they get up from one chair to sit in another. This development condenses the whole concept of the Alarm for governance, education, and the educational world”.
On the other hand, the independent candidate for the Presidency of the Republic, Achilleas Dimitriadis, in his relevant announcement mentions, among other things, that “a former Minister of Education, after causing the biggest disturbance in the field of education, then became Commissioner of mountainous regions and is now appointed member of EIF! I disapprove of these actions because they fix us on practices of past decades”.
Of course, Mr. Dimitriadis also cites his other positions regarding the composition of the Commission and as he notes, “no one knows the criteria that the candidates need to meet. But the whole of Cyprus understands why we remain stagnant and lag behind in many issues in the EU. Transparency and merit-based selection are concepts unknown in the practices of the outgoing government. The absence of a woman in the composition of the EYA proves that this government is indifferent to the fundamental issues of equality and equal representation of the sexes in state structures”.
“In my own proposals for the Fair State these practices will be ended. I propose radical reform in the way independent officers are appointed, including the chairman and members of the EFSA. On my website www.achilleas.com the directions I will follow to change things – Pillar I, Fair State. In particular, “for the appointments of independent authorities created by law or due to the obligations arising from the accession of Cyprus to the EU, the procedure will be legislated on the model of the appointment of the Independent Anti-Corruption Authority”, i.e. from a list of persons that will submit Advisory Board. Public hearings of the presidents of each independent Authority before the Parliament will also be foreseen,” he says.
Mr. Dimitriadis concludes that “we will have rules that will be followed, with transparency and evaluation, institutions that will make the citizens of our country proud. With feasible proposals, with political will we can give different content to our political life”.