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Growing list of candidates for coveted House president post

Marios Garoyian could become the focus of discussions

With the elections behind them and ahead of the first plenary session next Thursday, parties were focusing on the House presidency, which has traditionally been a reason for intense horse-trading, as alliances forged now, would play a key role in the approval of important legislation later.

Reports suggested ruling Disy leader Averof Neophytou was holding backstage talks in a bid to find a solution that would also secure a majority in parliament.

The party’s political office authorised Neophytou on Wednesday to prepare a proposal and submit it to them for approval within the coming days.

So far, only far right Elam chairman Christos Christou has officially announced his candidacy, though the Green party has also decided to contest the election with its head, Charalambos Theopemptou.

Theopemptou said however, that consultations will be held with other parties on other options since the first parliament session could see two or three sessions of voting.

He did rule out however, any notion of cooperating with Elam and Edek.

It also appeared that once again, Marios Garoyian, the chairman of Dipa and former leader of Diko, could become the focus of the discussions, as his party is seen as a potential government ally.

Garoyian, who had served a term as House president with the help of Disy in the past, was elected together with three other MPs on Sunday.

However, his party, which is basically made up by Diko dissidents, who were either expelled or left on their own, could see some disruption because Garoyian does not appear prepared to honour an earlier pledge to give up his seat to the runner up, Angelos Votsis.

Votsis is one of three former Diko MPs who had left the party after disagreeing with its leadership, forming Dipa, the alliance of democratic forces. They joined Dipa before the election and three of the party’s elected MPs belong to them.

The fourth is Garoyian who, as party leader, was automatically elected without needing a separate vote.

Reports said Garoyian had assured Votsis that he had no intention of getting into parliament and that his candidacy was aimed simply at boosting the party’s numbers.

But some Dipa members suggested that Garoyian must stay on or else the party will lose its cohesion. Some have also threatened to resign, daily Politis said. They also believe that Garoyian has a valid chance of winning the House presidency.

Some observers have suggested that it was time Cyprus got a female House president, proposing Akel’s Irene Charalambides, Disy’s Annita Demetriou, and Diko’s Christiana Erotokritou.

Demetriou and Erotokritou said that would be a decision for their parties. So far however, reports suggested both Neophytou and Diko leader Nicolas Papadopoulos were also considering running for the House presidency.

 

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