Socialists Edek on Tuesday announced they will hold an electoral congress to decide the leadership of its Nicosia district committee later this week as dissidents lambasted party chairman Marinos Sizopoulos for steamrolling the process and throwing out the rule book.
In a statement, Edek said it was calling elections for its Nicosia district committee for Friday. The move came immediately after seven of the eight committee members resigned en masse, leaving a vacuum to be filled.
The seven members who quit then called for a new election as soon as possible – an indication the move was staged.
Reacting to the news, a group of Edek cadres said the party under Sizopoulos’ watch is spiraling into authoritarianism and disarray.
Self-styled as reformers, the group described the actions of Sizopoulos and his coterie as “verging on the irrational, if not already beyond that point.”
They said Sizopoulos arbitrarily called a statutory party congress within the space of 48 hours, “an hour later he calls a regular electoral congress (to anoint himself ‘chairman’) and three days later he calls for ‘elections’ for the other party officials.”
These were unprecedented decisions which “insult the history and ideology of Edek, and provoke the members and friends of Edek.”
The party’s electoral processes have sparked protracted in-fighting, including internal disputes over the legitimacy of member rolls. The row has focused on the validity of the party members’ register.
Party dissidents have alleged irregularities as regards who can vote, accusing the incumbents of shenanigans in a bid to hang onto power. The party leadership countered that everything is being done by the book and suggested that opponents seek to create problems because they know they have no chance of winning.