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Politics

Papandreou’s Last Stand? KINAL Votes for New Party Chief

December 12, 2021

ATHENS – Ten years after he resigned as Prime Minister over calling a referendum on austerity attached to an international bailout, former PASOK Socialist leader George Papandreou squared off Dec. 12 in a run-off to see if its offshot will pick him or rival Nikos Androulakis, a Member of the European Parliament.

Papandreou finished second a week earlier to Androulakis by a margin of 37.06-27.8 percent, essentially a repudiation of the former premier who responded by first claiming fraud in the voting before backing off.

Almost as soon as he said the voting wasn’t above board he said that it wasn’t and that he didn’t allege irregularities after he did. His reign as PASOK leader eventually led the party to disintegrate and some of its veterans leading the now politically-irrelevant KINAL.

An unclear statement he released said that “On the occasion of publications that do not correspond to reality regarding the letter of George A. Papandreou to the Election Commission, we clarify that George A. Papandreou did not make any complaint, on the contrary from the Commission to investigate complaints that have been submitted to that body,” said Kathimerini.

“Nobody talked about fraud, nobody raised the issue of the result of the first Sunday. George A. Papandreou, as he should have done, did the obvious for the Party and the respect of the rules of the electoral process and in order to ensure next Sunday’s process,” speaking of himself in the third person.

Androulakis also downplayed any sense there was trouble in the marginal party that is politically irrelevant with only 22 seats in the 300-member Parliament, leaving it with no real voice or say in what happens.

“I will not allow anyone to play with the unity of the party….Our members were hurt, our friends will not be hurt again by the behaviors of old protagonists,” said Androulakis before the two faced off in the final.

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