Monday, November 2, 2015

When Will They Fire Yiannis Stournaras?

If the greatest problem of the Greek judicial system was/is one of secretarial support, that problem has now been relieved by the decision to promote 28 former Finance Ministry cleaners to secretarial posts in the Greek judicial system.

I am not trying to be cute here. There may be very good reasons for promoting the above 28 former cleaners. There are always two sides to everything and, regrettably, I don't know the other side.

However, there is an issue of personnel decisions or rather: on what grounds are people moved into public positions and/or removed from them. I have been reading that SYRIZA is making appointments on the same old crony basis as previous governments had done. Meritocracy does not seem to be a priority of theirs.

The most worrisome aspect is not the people they hire but, instead, the people they fire. Katerina Savvaidou, head of the General Secretariat of Public Revenue, was fired for the simple reason that she refused to resign. She should have resigned, in the eyes of the government, because of a breach of duty. She may well have committed a breach of duty but, in order to determine that, there would have to be a court's judgment instead of a politician's decision.

Costas Botopoulos, Greece's Chief Securities Regulator, was asked by the government to resign. Again, there may be very justified reasons for doing that except that they are not apparent, not to mention transparent.

As I observe such developments, there is only one question which goes through my mind, namely:

When will they fire Yiannis Stournaras?


  1. I would guess that Mario Draghi has a strong opinion on that. I have said it before, populist governments can not live with strong institutions, and their argument is always the same "WE ARE ELECTED BY THE PEOPLE, YOU ARE NOT". However, being elected does not mean you can break or bend the laws as you wish.

  2. Could anyone believe that ninety percent of state hospital directors are objectively incompetent and must urgently be replaced by “better” officers, subject to selection by a “special committee”? IMHO this is a kind of political interference in public function that doesn’t fit in modern democratic Europe.

    Most state hospital directors to go after failing

    eKath> A number of state hospital managers will be removed from their positions in November after failing to pass an evaluation process, the government said on Friday.

    eKath> Alternate Health Minister Pavlos Polakis said the government has received the results of the assessments and will be seeking to replace most of the hospital managers in the next few weeks.

    eKath> “The vast majority will leave based on the marks they got,” he said. Kathimerini understands that around 10 percent of officials will remain in their positions after being deemed to have done at least satisfactory jobs.
    eKath> Caretaker administrators will be installed at hospitals where the managers will be removed while the government invites applications for the vacancies and a special committee assesses the candidates. The process of appointing new hospital directors is expected to take around three months.

  3. Mr Botopoulos resigned the day after. Apparently this has not been published in the eKathimerini English online version, but it was in greekreporter.

    These cases are rapidly accumulating.