Parliament on Thursday voted the 2021 state budget down with 29 votes against and 24 in favour.
Specifically, the votes against involved 16 AKEL MPs, 18 MPs of the Democratic Party (DIKO), three MPs of the Movement for Social Democracy (EDEK), one Citizens’ Alliance MP, two Greens MPs, and the independent MP Anna Theologou.
Only two MPs of the National Popular Front (ELAM) joined the 18 MPs of ruling party Democratic Rally (DISY) in voting in favour of the state budget. There were no abstentions.
With the state budget voted down, all 50 MPs approved legislation allowing the expenses of January 2021 to be paid with twelfths.
The move follows the provision of Article 168, paragraph 3 of the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus, which states that “if the Budget has not been adopted by the House of Representatives by the first day of the financial year to which it relates, the House of Representatives may, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, by a resolution, authorise the meeting of any expenditure required, for a period not exceeding one month at any one time but in any event not exceeding two months in the aggregate, from the Consolidated Fund or other Public Funds as they may consider essential for the continuance of the public services shown in the Budget until the expiration of such period: Provided that the expenditure so authorised for any service shall not exceed the proportion with respect to such period of the amount voted for that service in the Budget for the preceding financial year.”
Meanwhile, Article 67 allows a different way out, that of the dissolution of Parliament and the calling of fresh elections.