Further details emerged on Wednesday of the overtime request filed by deputy government spokesperson Doxa Komodromou, including three hours one evening for attending a charity football event for children with cancer.
The latest information came to light after the controversy prompted the government to withdraw its request for the University of Cyprus to pay overtime for its seconded employee: Komodromou.
An initial €2,486 claimed by Komodromou covered the period between March and May, but on Wednesday new details emerged of the period between June and August.
Politis described the ongoing case as a “scandal”, further labelling the overtime she filed for as “illegal and provocative” – claiming her requests added up to about €1,000 per month. The minimum wage in Cyprus is €960.
The daily published details showing Komodromou had claimed overtime when attending book launches, funerals, festivals, meeting officials and preparing speeches. The latter typically took her about three hours.
It was further reported that her claims for overtime were approved by the presidential office.
Komodromou’s appointment has been the subject of much scrutiny from the audit office from as far back as April, shortly after the new government came into power.
Earlier this week, Auditor-general Odysseas Michaelides spoke at the House finance committee, saying “Komodromou is not a deputy government spokeswoman but performs these duties, therefore her secondment is legal.
“Secondments in the public service concern positions in the public service and the seconded person cannot be a political official, since the constitution provides for the separation of political and administrative power,” he said.
Michaelides added that for this reason, “as is the case of Andreas Iosif in the previous government, they chose not to be officials but to exercise the rights and duties of the positions and be subject to the rights and obligations of the position they hold in the public service”.
He added that “the orthodox solution would have been for Komodromou to resign from the University of Cyprus and to be appointed as deputy government spokeswoman, and this ‘double door’ causes problems.
“The existing solution was acceptable but it seems that things are being distorted. Komodromou doesn’t punch a card, so there cannot be any request for overtime [from her],” he said.
Additionally, he said the reasons given for Komodromou’s overtime requests are “not acceptable”. “Among them, she requested overtime from 3pm to 12am to attend a cabinet meeting in Troodos, to attend a funeral or a memorial service, but also to attend the opening of an observatory”.
The auditor general emphasised that the standard salary for a full-time deputy government spokesperson would be higher than the salary that Komodromou is currently earning, and that “if she wants a higher salary she will have to resign from her position at the university and be appointed by the President”.