By Peter Stevenson
Limassol’s Mesa Yitonia municipality is suing the Education Ministry for the €1.5m it says it is owed in state funding.
The amount has amassed over almost 20 years according to the municipality which needed the money to fund a kindergarten.
Mesa Yitonia Mayor Doros Antoniou expressed his sadness that the municipality was forced to take legal action against the ministry.
“Unfortunately, we have called on the Interior and Education ministries on numerous occasions to pay us what they owe, especially now that the municipality is facing financial problems to the extent that we are unable to pay our staff,” he said.
Due to the large amount of money owed, the Finance Ministry was to handle the affair and last week Antoniou sent a letter to minister Harris Georgiades asking him to make arrangements as soon as possible.
In 1991 the state signed a deal with the G.N Kalogeropoulou Foundation which meant that the Education Ministry would be obliged to cover any losses the foundation’s kindergarten might have made. Payment would be in the form of funding towards the municipality.
According to Antoniou, since 1996, the Ministry has only covered part of those losses and now owes €1.5m.
The mayor expressed the hope that there will be a positive outcome and that a method of gradual payment could be found. “The municipality could stop existing if payment is not made,” he said.