I am delighted to see that both Peter Davis and Penny Douglas have recently and separately emerged as supporters of a long established campaign I have been running.
This has been an endeavour to persuade the powers that be to consider enfranchising all genuinely resident expats in respect of being able to vote in Presidential elections.
Possibly a qualifying period of residence should be imposed, but tens of thousands of expats from many countries live here permanently now, and have to accept whatever decisions are made by a given President in terms of taxes, laws, property transactions, and a whole and highly comprehensive host of other legal and social issues.
I have been regularly writing to the media and to the President for a long time seeking a review of franchise rights – although unlike Penny Douglas (Sunday Mail July 12), I have not sought the establishment of expats in Government posts. I note Peter Davis would agree with Penny Douglas on this point though.
There are several hundred thousand Greek Cypriots living in the UK who are awarded the right to vote in all UK elections from the day they arrive in the country – as long as they register their interest. Why cannot that right, with conditions perhaps, be extended to expats in Cyprus?
Very unfortunately the President famously and rather high handedly never responds to letters or articles – and neither do his ministers – but I suggest that this arrogance and discourtesy has no place in a country which claims to be a democracy.
Accordingly we do not know what his view is. All I ever initially asked is for the President or someone within his Government to explain to us what the problems would be to include a highly contributive and mature section of the island’s community when it comes to a Presidential election? That explanation has never been forthcoming. Why? Is there something of which to be afraid? If so, what is it?
Clive Turner, Paphos