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Successes and disappointments on Dora Bakoyanni's road

16 March 2009 / 18:03:45  GRReporter
6876 reads

Marina Nikolova


Last week Dora Bakoyanni was chosen for a member of the French Academy for Humanitarian and Political Sciences (FAHPS), where she is the only woman – equal to Pope Benedict XVI and the King of Spain Juan Carlos. Mr. Bakoyanni has the ambition to become a Prime Minister of Greece and this became a reason to ask ourselves who exactly this brave and giving woman is. 

Let us untwine the ball but we will catch the thread of events from the last position Dora Bakoyanni took over. She accepted the prestigious title to become a member of the FAHPS, which the Academy has never given to a woman. She is the only female representative among the 12 members – politicians, scientists, among which are Pope Benedict XVI, the former UN General Secretary Javier Perez de Cuellar, Albanian writer and a Nobel Prize nominee Ismail Kadare, the King of Spain Juan Carlos and the English Prince Charles. The Academy is the oldest institution in France. It teaches human sciences and the main goal is to make them understandable in their entirety as well as to improve the forms of political organization, so they can be of use for the government interests and for the development of the society and of individuals. 

What is the success secret of Dora Bakoyanni – combination of the charisma of her personality and a product of the stormy political past of her family… Certainly, personalities like hers are hard to find – her achievements in the political scene as a Foreign Minister helped build the image of Greece as a country which is up to time. 

Let us track Bakoyanni’s road, which she had to pass before she got her political glory today. She created an active political profile of Greece all around the world and she managed to differentiate the scandals, which shook her Party’s government so much that her name is being prepared for the Prime Minister position.


Daughter and wife

Dora Bakoyanni was ten years old when she heard half of Greece screaming the slogan “Damn you Motzotakis!” Dora’s father is Konstantinos Mitzotakis – one of the most popular Prime Ministers in contemporary Greek history, who governed the country between 1990 and 1993. He was actively participating on the political scene ever since 1946. Just like many other politicians in Greece, Dora Bakoyanni and her father belong to a political dynasty with a long history: Konstantinos Mitzotakis is a nephew of Elefterios Venizelos, who was Greece’s Prime Minister during the Balkan wars and he was left in history with the fact that he succeeded in making Greece Great – the dream of the country to spread onto five seas and two continents. 

Dora Bakoyanni comes from a family of worthy politicians but she manages to create her own name in international diplomacy. In her almost 13th year career as a politician she manages to build an image, which wins confidence and promises security. 

When Dora was 14 years old, the political take-over of the generals begins and a dictator regime is enforced. Her family runs away from the country and goes to Paris, where most of the Greek political and cultural intellectuals gather. Dora is 15 years old when the French students make their historic revolution in 1969 but her revolutionary step is against her father and mother – just like it happens with the ancestors of the economic and political aristocracy. Dora marries Pavlos Bakoyannis – she is 20 and he 37. 

Dora Mitzotakis and Pavlos Bakoyannis meet during the years when she studies in Munich and he is a journalist in Deusche Welle. Back then, his reports on the dictatorship regime in Greece become very popular. Right after the regime falls, Dora and Pavlos come back to Greece, get married and have two children – daughter Alexia and son Kostas. 

During this period – between 1974 and 1989 no one could bet on Mrs. Bakoyanni’s political career. She was the young wife of one very promising politician, mother of two children and daughter of Kostas Mitzotakis. Dora Bakoyanni graduated from the Law University in Athens. She speaks English, German and French fluently and has all the qualities for a successful career in the state administration. During 1977 she takes some tests in order to be appointed in the Ministry of Coordination – in the European Economic Community department. 

At age 30, Dora Bakoyanni takes the responsibility for the political bureau of her father, who at the time was the leader of New Democracy. After a ten year marriage and raising two children, her desire for a political improvement close to her father was not the best investment for her future – it was actually a runaway from the routine. But Dora has the luck or misfortune not to wonder for too long which road to take. Ground breaking events define the direction of her next moves. On September 26, 1989 her husband Pavlos Bakoyannis, parliament member of New Democracy was killed by the terrorist organization “November 17th.” 

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