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First resignation in Papandreou’s reshuffled cabinet

25 August 2011 / 19:08:29  GRReporter
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Chaos reigns in the Greek shipping following the Prime Minister George Papandreou’s decision to unite merchant marine, development and competitiveness into one super ministry. This is the opinion of the Deputy Minister of the super ministry Harris Pamboukis which he expressed on the Greek state television. He suggested that all organizations, departments and agencies engaged with the commercial fleet to incorporate and restore the now former Ministry of Merchant Marine.

At yesterday's meeting of the Ministerial Council his proposal was criticized both by his boss, the Minister of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping Michalis Chrysohoidis, and the Minister of Citizen Protection Christos Papoutsis, who is responsible for the Greek coastguards after the closure of the marine ministry. According to Greek media, Prime Minister George Papandreou did not like the criticism to his decision. Just a day later, Harris Pamboukis submitted his resignation which was accepted immediately.

This is the first large discrepancy in the socialist government just two months after the reshuffling George Papandreou made. "At this crucial moment we are obliged to abandon dogmatism and personal strategies that do not serve the national interest. The goal today is economic development and the commercial fleet could contribute to achieving it," writes Pamboukis in his personal message to the Prime Minister. According to him, the need to restore the ministry is apparent, arguing that all relevant institutions suggest the same. "My decision to resign confirms the meaning of involving in politics to me, it is a sign of responsibility, an act of a man who is not dependent on posts and services, it is natural proof of dignity," concludes his letter Harris Pamboukis.

The news was met vigorously by opposition parties. The conservative New Democracy party has accused Prime Minister George Papandreou that he refuses to admit his mistake to close the Ministry of Merchant Marine and that his stubbornness is harming the national interest. "Unfortunately, comradely feuding in the government is destroying one of the two branches that are the champions of the economy - shipping," said the party spokesman Yiannis Mihalakis. The far-right LAOS determined Pamboukis as a "brilliant" minister and invited the others to take his example. "Following their personal interests, Papandreou’s ministers are seeking ways to avoid carrying out the reforms which the state is committed to implement," said representativse of Dora Bakoyannis’ Democratic Alliance.

Tags: Harris Pamboukis Merchant marineResignationShippingMinistryGreek economic crisis
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