Greek Cypriots living in Pyla are fed up with footing the bill for the Turkish Cypriot residents of the village, Akel said on Saturday urging Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides to look into the community’s problems.
In a letter to Petrides, the party’s leader Andros Kyprianou, following contacts with Pyla residents, expressed Akel’s “strong concern for the prevailing situation and the problems caused in the community.”
The prevalent feeling within the community is that “Greek Cypriots are paying for the Turkish Cypriots’ livelihood.”
Kyprianou said a serious issue arises as to the cost of services provided to Turkish Cypriots, which is not fully covered by the state. “As a result, the community council and Greek Cypriots bear an unbearable financial burden,” he said.
He added that illegality is booming while some exploit the community’s status for their personal gain particularly regarding activities concerning illegal gambling.
Kyprianou said several illegal casinos operate in the community that enjoy a privileged status with free electricity and no community council fees. “This whole situation has created strong feelings among the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots of the community, and despite the steps that have been taken, there has been, unfortunately, no result.”
The Akel leader said the whole situation poses many dangers to the smooth coexistence of Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots but also to the community itself, thus jeopardising its role as a model of peaceful coexistence.
“I would ask you to make the right decisions and take the appropriate actions,” Kyprianou said in his letter.
Under a long-standing government policy, the Turkish Cypriot inhabitants in the mixed village of Pyla, located in the buffer zone, are not charged for electricity, water supply or garbage collection.
The Pyla community council have been calling for help to meets its financial obligations for quite some time now since it is unable to raise sufficient funds to cover the cost of public utilities.