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Mavroyiannis reportedly spent €1.2 million on his election campaign

Προεδρικές Εκλογές 2023 – Επαναληπτ

Ex-presidential candidate Andreas Mavroyiannis spent €1.2 million on his election campaign, according to a filing made on Monday.

The amount exceeds the €1 million permitted by law.

Mavroyiannis, the Akel candidate, became the first candidate in the 2023 elections to have filed his expenses as required by law. And he did so before the deadline of two months after the results of a general election are published – in this case, that date was February 13.

The filing was made to the Chief Returning Officer.

According to a brief breakdown released to the media, of the €1.2 million in Mavroyiannis’ expenses, €749,000 related to expenses on ‘promotion and communication’, €207,000 on the cost of functions and printout materials, €136,000 on administrative costs, and €114,000 on rent.

The Chief Returning Officer will now forward the filing to the auditor-general who will check it. Once the Audit Office has checked, it compiles a report with remarks and sends it back to the Chief Returning Officer.

Marios Petrides, spokesperson for the Audit Office, told the Cyprus Mail that any campaign expenses over and above the permitted €1 million must be returned to the state.

In Mavroyiannis’ case, that would mean him returning €200,000 – assuming that’s the amount the Audit Office signs off on after checking.

Petrides explained that excesses in relation to election campaign spending are neither a misdemeanour nor a criminal offence – rather, the candidate must return any excess amount as a ‘penalty’.

He said the wording of the law is explicit, in that candidates have to return any excess spending.

“The law does not state for example, that a candidate ‘may’ or ‘might’ be required to return the excess amount. At any rate, that decision rests with the Chief Returning Officer.”

The Chief Returning Officer is also the permanent secretary of the interior ministry.

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