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Akel starts soul-searching process after poor showing in elections

Akel leader Andros Kyprianou pictured after the results were announced

Main opposition Akel on Wednesday said that the party has launched consultations to reflect on its disappointing showing in the House election amidst reports that leader Andros Kyprianou will not stand for re-election as leader in July.

The party announced that its political bureau held a preliminary discussion on Wednesday.

This discussion, Akel said in a statement, will continue Saturday at the meeting of the party’s central committee. At the same time, it added, discussion has begun with the members and friends of the party, which will continue in local and regional gatherings “in order to express and hear the views of the people of the Left”.

This debate will conclude at the 23rd congress of the party, between July 2 and 4, it added.

“The congress will determine Akel’s course and priorities for the next five years, having as a compass the strong and effective presence,” it said.

Akel is having to ponder its shrinking electoral support and reports that Kyprianou will not stand for re-election as leader in July. The party garnered 22.34 per cent of the votes last Sunday, down by 3.3 per cent compared with the 2016 House elections.

Newly elected MP Christos Christophides said a leader should take responsibility for good and bad results, “but it would be unfair to saddle one person with the blame”.

Christophides said the party had not yet discussed the election results, adding that there were many issues that had to be looked at.

“We need to hear from the people. Not only party members but also all those who define themselves as leftists but did not vote for Akel.”

Akel is scheduled to hold an electoral congress this year. The date has been set for July 2. MPs Giorgos Loukaides and Stephanos Stephanou have been tipped as favourites to replace Kyprianou.


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