The Green Party leadership asked members on Sunday to fill out a questionnaire to help it decide what line to take in next year’s presidential elections.
Although the leadership had talks with both candidates – Diko leader Nicholas Papadopoulos and Citizens’ Alliance leader Giorgos Lillikas – it has avoided making a choice.
Speaking to journalists after his speech at the Greens’ extraordinary general meeting on Sunday, party leader Giorgos Perdikis, said that the outcome of the survey would determine what the party would do. The options were to support one of the above-mentioned candidates, not to side with anyone, or to propose a Green party candidate.
The questionnaire asked respondents to rate on a scale from one to 10, whether they would like the party to back Papadopoulos, Lillikas, a Green party candidate or for party members to be free to vote for whomever they wanted.
“We have asked our members to advise us, via the survey, on whether to intensify procedures to back one candidate or to continue a consultations aimed at achieving convergences with the two candidates they have in mind today or anyone else,” Perdikis said.
He added that the party was still at the beginning of its drive to find the right candidate.
“We see eye-to-eye with Nicolas Papadopoulos on the Cyprus problem, we have received the positions of Mr Lillikas. I feel that we are still at the beginning,” he said.
The extent to which the party would achieve convergences with a candidate was of vital importance, he said, but there were also other criteria such as a candidate’s “trustworthiness, suitability, co-operation”.
“There is also the Cyprus issue that can change the overall landscape of the presidential election, if and when there will eventually be presidential elections,” Perdikis said.
The party, he said, would not make any decision based on what the presidential candidates wanted but on what the Greens wanted.
The final decision, based on the results of the survey, was to be taken at an island-wide party conference.
Asked would what he would do if party members wanted him as the party candidate, Perdikis said he would discuss the possibility.
He added that the party had not ruled out a possible cooperation with Akel, but that at the moment the party did not have a candidate. Akel is currently searching for a new candidate after its plans to back businessman Mike Spanos fell through.
The Greens did not follow the other parties of the so-called centre, Edek and Solidarity, in backing Papadopoulos, despite having talks with him about his candidacy.