President of the Cyprus Parliament Demetris Syllouris said Wednesday that he won’t stand in the way of his parliamentary immunity being waved to accommodate a probe launched by local police after a fresh batch of Al Jazeera allegations situated him at the epicentre of a massive corruption scandal involving the island’s golden passports scheme.
In a letter to the Attorney General George Savvides on Wednesday, Syllouris said he doesn’t object to the waiving of his immunity by the Supreme Court, in light of the investigation launched.
On Tuesday, Syllouris offered a public apology and announced his abstention from his duties as of the coming Monday, but with the President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades away in Brussels on EU business, Syllouris, as his second-in-command, is currently acting as President of the Republic, a development causing strong public outcry.
Former Attorney General Costas Clerides also called out the irony of the development, telling the Cyprus News Agency that Syllouris must either resign or carry on with his duties, as the paradox of his abstention on one day and his assumption of the country’s highest position the next was “a matter of moral order”, for which there is a gap in the Cyprus constitution.
The leader of left-wing AKEL Andros Kyprianou sent a letter to Syllouris, asking that he resigns.
MPs refuse to convene, demand Syllouris resigns
The Parliamentary ethics committee refused to convene on Wednesday morning, stressing the paradox of convening to discuss the proposed code of ethics for MPs, when the President of Parliament is currently in the middle of a massive corruption scandal.
Committee chair and DISY MP Zacharias Zachariou said the committee refused to convene in view of sending a political message, noting that “the society of Cyprus is absolutely has every right to look at us and spit in our faces. We gave them that right.”
Greens MP Giorgos Petrides said “the ethics committee has been abolished, and will only be reinstated through the immediate resignation of Mr. Syllouris.”