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Our View: The hypocrisy, opportunism and populism of the communist party are staggering

AKEL's Stavros Evagorou

THE OPPORTUNISM and hypocrisy of AKEL’s cheap demagoguery knows no bounds. Every day their spokesmen take the moral high ground, making scathing statements against some government decision or other, without offering anything a rational argument to back their reactionary views. Communists have always peddled dogmatism, in the unshakeable belief that they have the monopoly on truth.

In the last week, we have heard AKEL spokesmen attack the government’s plans to seek expert advice on the privatisation of SGOs because privatisation, according to communist dogma, is a bad thing, and criticise the decision to bring co-op banks under state-ownership, because the members would lose their ownership rights. In short, they are both in favour and against state ownership – in favour with regard to SGOs, but against with regard to the co-ops.

There is an explanation for the double standards. AKEL has control of the co-ops under the current ownership regime, a control it would lose when the state takes over. And the party conveniently ignores the fact that these wonderful co-ops would need €1.5 billion – the taxpayer had to borrow from the troika – for their re-capitalisation needs.

The members, as owners, were liable but escaped without paying a cent and there was no bail-in of depositors so AKEL should praise the government for saving the mismanaged co-ops, instead of engaging in demagoguery, claiming the movement would lose its identity and autonomy under the bailout deal agreed with the troika.

The cheap populism of the communists should surprise nobody. The previous week, the AKEL spokesman for the economy, Stavros Evagorou declared that his party “would back every step and effort for the exit of the Bank of Cyprus from the resolution regime for the good of the country and the economy.”

It is beyond belief that the party which had spent all last year disparaging the banks and destroying confidence in the banking sector is now concerned about saving the Bank of Cyprus. It was the AKEL government that allowed an insolvent Laiki to build up a €9.5bn ELA debt that was transferred to the BoC, so that it would not be debited with the political cost of bankruptcy.

The hypocrisy, opportunism and populism of the communist party are staggering. It pushed a struggling country over the cliff, with its incompetence and cowardice and now it wants us to believe it has all the remedies for the economic disaster zone it created. The comrades even claim to want the “good of the country and the economy”, having proved, beyond any doubt, in practice, that the only thing that matters to them is AKEL. Dishonesty and double standards go hand in hand.




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