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Opinion Tales from the Coffeeshop

Tales from the Coffeeshop: Parasites have no shame  

The miserable leader of the public parasites, Glafcos Hadjiklamouris is hurt by the barrage of well-deserved abuse levelled against his blood-sucking members

THE MISERABLE leader of the public parasites, Glafcos Hadjiklamouris, felt so hurt by the barrage of well-deserved abuse levelled against his blood-sucking members, after the decision of the administrative court ruling the pay cuts imposed by the state unconstitutional, he held a news conference on Thursday and gave recital in self-pity, begging for sympathy.

How deluded he must be thinking he was going to win anyone’s sympathy. Every time he opens his big mouth to complain about the allegedly unfair treatment of the lazy, labour aristocrats of Pasydy, presenting them as victims of a cruel system, the only thing he achieves is to piss off more people. Claiming victimhood for his parasites is a step too far.

At Thursday’s news conference he was joined by the leaders of other unions of the idle classes – the three teaching unions and the Association of pensioner parasites. The pensioners were used by the devious Hadjiklamouris in the hope of earning our pity. He said: “The money exists at this moment and it is unfair insisting continuing unlawful legislation, and especially for pensioners.”

You would have cried if you did not know that these were no ordinary pensioners, on 600 euro a month who have difficulty making ends meet. They were the pensioners of the parasitic sector that are paid a monthly pension of two and three grand, and were claiming victimhood because of a 10 per cent cut during the crisis. Parasites, from the leader down, have no shame.

NO BOSSES of unions of the real working people were at Hadjiklamouris’ sympathy-begging fest, probably not wanting their presence to be seen as approval of his all-devouring sense of entitlement that was on show when he was not pleading for our sympathy.

There was much misinformation about the cost of enforcing the court decision on the pay-cuts said the miserable-looking leader of the parasites. It would not cost €5 billion as some claimed (nobody made such a claim) but only €200m extra for each of the next four years, if the wages were restored to their pre-2013 levels he said. A paltry total of €800m plus €40m for those that went to court and would be given all the back-pay as well.

The government put the cost at a little over a billion euro as it would also have to restore the wages of SGO and municipality employees. “Now we are saying where we would find the money; the money exists,” said Hadjimourmouris, pointing out that the state would have a surplus of €650m this year.

Instead of trying to reduce the huge public debt, the government should give the surplus to the poor, public parasites and end the injustice. The only problem is that the surplus might not be enough because the teaching unions, in a show of solidarity for their fellow parasites will also demand the lifting of the pay cuts imposed on teachers from this month. Oelmek has already started collecting signatures of members and Poed is considering doing the same. At this rate the forecasted budget surplus for 2019 could turn into a deficit.

BANK employees’ union Etyk has also seized the administrative court’s decision to demand an end to the pay cuts imposed on its members. In a letter sent to banks, Etyk, whose boss is more militant than Hadjiklamouris, demanded the lifting of all pay cuts, the granting of all pay increments of past years that were frozen, as well as the pay increment for 2019, and CoLA.

In a circular issued, after the court decision, Etyk declared that “based on the decision, it is made clear that the annual wage increment as well as CoLA are part of worker’s gross pay and constitute OWNERSHIP.”

It warned: “Bank boards that have not made these payments to their staff must do so immediately, ending the blatant violation of existing agreements, the law but also the constitution of the Cyprus Republic.” Our judges with their wise decisions declaring wages and pensions as being property safeguarded by the constitution, could have given Etyk an opportunity to force the banks to need another recapitalisation. The banks could take their customers’ uninsured deposits, once again for their recapitalisation as the courts do not consider bank deposits to be property, movable or immovable.

Bank employees may be shocked to discover, however, that only public parasites enjoy the privilege of their wages being deemed private property by the courts.

ETYK may lose some of its bolshiness very soon. Departing Bank of Cyprus’ CEO John Hourican has a big surprise in store for the bank’s workers. He has plans for lay-offs that some bank insiders believe could reach a thousand workers.

Hourican, who relishes confrontation, had initially drawn plans for an all-out war with Etyk, which has been calling the shots at the banks for decades, reasoning that there was no other way of cutting the bank’s debilitating wage costs. The B of C board of directors vetoed the idea not wanting a messy and drawn out conflict with the militant union that would never to give in without a fight.

There was a big risk it would turn vicious, disrupt banking work and spark a lot of bad publicity, which was the last thing the B of C needed. Redundancies was Plan B, even though the bank would be forced to offer over-generous compensation packages.

A couple of months ago, Hourican met Prez Nik to inform him about his plan. According to our mole at the palace, Nik gave his approval, but asked Hourican to wait until after May’s elections for the European Parliament before announcing the redundancies’ plan, presumably because he did not want the inevitable fallout to affect Disy’s share of the vote.

THE THREESOME diplomacy circus inaugurated by Prez Nik, which many of our countrymen buy as something worthy and serious, was in Jordan last weekend where the second tripartite summit took place.

Apart from memorandums of cooperation in investment, research and innovation, education and combatting terrorism being signed, the three countries agreed the setting up of a Permanent Secretariat of Tripartite Mechanisms, that would be based in Nicosia and set the framework that would make the Secretariat’s operation effective for the three countries.

I recall that Nik has agreed a similar Nicosia-based secretariat with the partners in the other threesomes he organised. Will there be a different secretariat for each threesome or one secretariat serving all threesomes simultaneously? The former is a safer bet as many more public jobs will be created and Kyproulla could become a regional centre for threesomes. The option of one Secretariat for all, runs the risk of creating jealousies and rivalries among our threesome partners all vying to be the number one in our affections, and would create fewer jobs.

The other good news from Jordan was information that Iraq would “enter the formations of tripartite co-operations.” In Jordan the foreign ministers of the threesome met the foreign minister of Iraq and discussed how they could help in the reconstruction of Iraq.

As Phil reported after the summit, “the network of co-operations of Cyprus, as the results show, is going from good to better.”

IRAQ is obviously our government’s next target to be wooed into a threesome or this time it may be a foursome and include Jordan. The foreign ministers of the four countries would be meeting again and will participate in a business forum that would be held in Baghdad.

We might soon need a permanent secretariat for quadripartite mechanisms as well, assuming Iraq joins the fold. According to Phil, Prez Nik was looking at the possibility of visiting Baghdad or if he does not, the Iraqi prime minister would visit Kyproulla. Before long, through his threesome diplomacy Nik will have imposed the Pax Kypriana in the Med and Middle East.

HOW IRRITATING it was to hear the CyBC constantly referring to Nik’s official visit to Georgia last week as “historic”. It was not only the state broadcaster that did this. The state news agency Tass, also wrote about prez’s “historic visit to Georgia.”

They both got their cue from the government spokesman, Prodromos Prodromou, who had billed the visit as an “official visit of historic significance.” What historic significance was there considering Georgia was not even invited to join a tripartite? How was Nik making history, by getting on a plane to visit Georgia?

The flimsy reason for calling the visit “historic” was that it was the first time a Kyproulla president was going there, but I doubt it would be recorded in any history books or inspire the composing of an opera like Nixon’s visit to China had done.

APART from the threesome diplomacy, our foreign minister, Nikos Christodoulides, is now pursuing what he has coined as “economic diplomacy,” organising business forums (we do not know whether the taxpayer is picking up the bills for these) at which he is the star of the show.

He was at one for South East Asia recently and 10 days ago spoke at a business forum held in the Lebanon where the first tripartite, at foreign minister level, was held. A tripartite summit of historic significance with the Lebanon is scheduled for later this year.

Meanwhile, Christodoulides, as part of his self-promotion drive, held a public consultation in Limassol last Monday, with the “aim of defining a fully acceptable model of economic diplomacy for Cyprus,” reported Tass news agency, “stressing that dialogue with the citizen and society of citizens constitutes one of the basic priorities of his ministry.”

He had held a similar public consultation in Nicosia. And this guy wants to be taken seriously. Now if he was the minister in charge of building roads, town planning I could understand him having public consultations, but for foreign policy and diplomacy by public demand seems insane even by Kyproulla standards? The economic diplomacy targeting Iraq was probably suggested by a member of the public at the Nicosia consultation.

THE GOVERNMENT was “satisfied” with the UNSG’s latest report on the Cyprob and why wouldn’t it be? Jane Holl Lute would carry on visiting the rain-swept isle for the dialogue of the deaf and Prez Nik was not singled out for blame for the lack of progress on the terms of reference – both leaders were blamed equally, hence the satisfaction with the report.

In reality, the government should have been thrilled with the report because it kept the process alive, which is all it wants. An ongoing process that leads nowhere has been the objective of all our presidents from the time of Spy Kyp, with the possible exception of George Vass. They all love the journey, which allows for patriotic posturing and defiant rhetoric, as long as there is no danger of ever reaching its destination. As long as the Cyprob Odyssey never arrives at Ithaki they will be happy.


PSEUDO foreign minister, Kudret Ozersay, a humourless, self-regarding windbag, felt duty-bound to issue an announcement about the bill lifting of the US arms embargo, during the visit to Kyproulla of the bill’s co-writer, Bob Menendez. His pseudo ministry issued a stern announcement warning that “the lifting of the embargo on the Greek Cypriot side will speed up the arms race in the eastern Mediterranean”. Statements made about the matter by the Greek Cypriot leadership and US senators “contain aggressiveness and a threat for peace and stability on the island.” This just confirms poor old Ozersay’s complete lack of a sense of humour. Does he not realise that by the time we pay what we owe our public parasites we will have no money left to buy a single US rifle.

THERE has been war talk in Kyproulla but it has nothing to do with the Cyprob or the lifting of the arms embargo. The outbreak of war has been caused by Gesy and does not threaten our Turkish Cypriot cousins, if we are to believe our newspapers. “They are fighting it but Gesy advances,” said Haravghi. Phil reported an “Explosive mix in Gesy”, while Politis identified a “Merciless war and hostage to the doctors.”

TODAY is a historic day for our establishment. This is not because we endorse the April 21, 1967 coup in Greece by the colonels, but because the first Coffeeshop appeared on this day, 28 years ago. I admit it does not have the historic significance of Prez Nik’s visit to Georgia, but I thought I would mention it anyway, in the hope of receiving thousands of birthday presents.

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