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Cyprus

Young and old called on to participate in protest over ‘co-op scandal’

Pensioner and student organisations on Tuesday called on their members to take part in a huge rally planned for Wednesday evening to protest against the developments that led to the closure of the co-op bank.

An announcement from the Association of Cypriot Pensioners invites seniors to participate in a protest on Wednesday at 6.30pm. outside the offices of public service union Pasydy in Nicosia and from there to the presidential palace.

“Cypriot retirees join their voice with the organisers of the event and call on the Cypriot people to dynamically show their presence,” the announcement said. A similar announcement came from the students union Psem.

Taxi drivers on Tuesday also announced their participation saying they would be represented by a “dynamic presence” to protest against “harmful unilateral changes to social security contributions” against them.

Farmers, teachers are community organisations have already announced their participation in the event. Demonstrators are protesting the “unfair treatment” they say they have been subjected to following the closure of the Co-op bank, and plan to voice their reactions against the scandal regarding the mismanagement that led to the closure.

Earlier in the month, a report on the demise of the Co-op found was released which held Finance Minister Harris Georgiades mainly responsible for the bank’s collapse under the weight of some €7bn in bad debts and its sale to Hellenic Bank.

The president and his government have disputed the findings of the committee, with Anastasiades reiterating his support for Georgiades.

Demonstrators will also demand that real-estate that is owned and managed by its cooperative savings fund, and which fell to government hands after the demise of the bank, is returned to them.

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