Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Cyprus: The result of the European elections does not satisfy us, says AKEL leader Stefanos Stefanou

In a statement, the General Secretary of AKEL (Progressive Party of Working People) Stefanos Stefanou assessed the result of the 2024 European Elections, pointing out that the outcome of the elections isn't satisfactory for the party. 

AKEL came second after centre-right DISY, gaining 21.67% of the vote but losing one of its two seats in the European Parliament. The big surprise of the EU elections in Cyprus was an unpolitical YouTube prankster, Fidias Panagiotou, who took a whopping 19.4 per cent as an independent candidate. 

It must be also noted that the far-right ELAM party marked the largest increase in votes of all parties, increasing its share by 2.95 per cent (11.2 per cent from 8.25 per cent in 2019).

In his statement, Stefanos Stefanou pointed out:

"When society speaks, as a Party we have an obligation to listen. This is precisely what AKEL has always done throughout its long course and this is what we intend to do in this election as well.

The people’s verdict is clear and we have no intention of hiding behind any verbal outline:  The election result of the European elections does not satisfy us.

Our first task, starting tomorrow, is to process it by decoding the messages that society is sending us. As a first reaction, however, we can note the following:

  • The loss of the second seat is a very negative development and determines today’s result.
  • In relation to the percentage we recorded, it certainly does not correspond to our electoral objective, which was to recover the momentum of AKEL Left Social Alliance.

In relation to the local government elections, AKEL fulfilled its electoral objectives by winning difficult battles. As a Party we gave priority to the specific characteristics of local communities and our choices were largely vindicated on an all-Cyprus scale. The stakes in the local elections have been decided and have a progressive outcome. With the results attained so far, many Mayors from AKEL or supported by AKEL have been elected.

In these elections we are confronted with an unprecedented political phenomenon that is defining the electoral landscape. Fidias Panagiotou, a candidate with no political positions and no programme, recorded a high double-digit percentage. It is not our intention to flatter anyone and say what one wants to hear, which is precisely why we say that elections are a mirror that reflects social

reality. A new reality where fellow citizens are opting for non-politics as a political choice. Obviously to send a message of depreciation to the political parties and to register their protest. These are issues of course that we will elaborate on in the day after. In any case, in our estimation, voting for Phidias Panayiotou is not a reward for some policy because quite simply there is no political content.

I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart those who voted both the AKEL Left Social Alliance electoral list in the European elections and the candidates we supported in the local government elections. I would also like to thank the cadres, members of AKEL and the Peoples Movement [Note: the mass organisations of the Left], as well as the thousands of volunteers for their hard work.

I also want to welcome the participation of our Turkish Cypriot compatriots in today’s electoral procedure. An event with special political significance as these elections are the only opportunity for Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots to vote together for the Cyprus and the Europe we want.

Finally, citizens should know that AKEL Left Social Alliance will continue to act politically with seriousness in confronting anti-social policies wherever from whatever side they originate. Our aim is to bring political engagement back to the forefront and fight for the formation of a broad progressive front together with society, demanding a better life for the many."