DISY should lead the way, not follow

E DII TO RII A L

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

The Demo­cratic Rally will be hold­ing a vote this week­end to choose new mem­bers for its cen­tral po­lit­i­cal of­fice (polit­buro) with elec­tions also slated for other party ranks, such as the women’s or­gan­i­sa­tion GODISY. The va­can­cies follow re­cent changes when Chris­tos Stylian­ides be­came Com­mis­sioner, hav­ing al­ready given up his party of­fice as an MEP, while party deputy leader Lefteris Christo­forou will re­place him in the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment and thus also gave up his party seat.

Although Satur­day’s pro­ce­dure may seem to be demo­cratic, it will have lit­tle or no im­pact on the daily lives of DISY sup­port­ers, let alone or­di­nary folk who are strug­gling to make ends meet or hold on to a much-needed job.

But con­sid­er­ing that this is the rul­ing party that backs Pres­i­dent Anas­tasi­ades’ poli­cies (or at least seems to) and that it is per­ceived to be the most demo­cratic of all po­lit­i­cal group­ings, it is about time DISY started act­ing like a front-run­ner and not a lag­gard that sim­ply fol­lows events.

Too much filth has come out into the open in re­cent months, es­pe­cially as re­gards cor­rup­tion in the civil ser­vice, abuse of power while in pub­lic of­fice and in­com­pe­tence of decision mak­ers on key is­sues, whether th­ese range from lo­cal ad­min­is­tra­tion and the sew­er­age com­pa­nies, all the way up to han­dling state pol­icy, hir­ing and fir­ing pub­lic ser­vants, man­ag­ing pub­lic com­pa­nies and ad­vis­ing the pres­i­dent.

What is lack­ing within the rul­ing party is qual­ity and depth, both in the cal­i­bre of in­di­vid­u­als as well as in the mind­set of a few peo­ple.

Re­cent events, frus­tra­tion over con­tin­ued un­em­ploy­ment and loss of fam­ily in­come have forced many peo­ple to seek out the ba­sics, that is, core val­ues of democ­racy, trans­parency, equal­ity, tol­er­ance and mer­i­toc­racy.

One would ex­pect the Demo­cratic Rally, that was orig­i­nally set up based on th­ese five sim­ple fun­da­men­tals, to lead the way. Peo­ple are des­per­ate for new and fresh lead­er­ship, but they have no one they can turn to as the rul­ing party has also low­ered its stan­dards and is no dif­fer­ent from the other noise mak­ers.

Change needs courage. And the lead­er­ship of the rul­ing party must find that courage to start the process for new blood, or at least push for­ward peo­ple that seem trust­wor­thy in the pub­lic eye. There is no suc­ces­sion at the top of the party and, as with many other par­ties, they are only go­ing from one elec­tion to the other, not re­ally hav­ing the long-term pub­lic in­ter­est in mind.

Hope­fully, after this week­end’s in­ter­nal by­elec­tion, the ball will start rolling for a gen­eral over­haul. Peo­ple want to be re­spected as or­di­nary cit­i­zens and vot­ers, they want to be told the truth and they want to be in­spired that this land has a worth­while fu­ture.

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