COMMENT

On truth and responsibility

Break from past practices

I have watched, along with many diaspora Greeks, with increasing alarm at the events unfolding in the land of my heritage. The recurring themes of a bloated civil service, sclerotic private sector, poor tax collection, lack of political will for change and leadership, an angry populace, amongst others, have been discussed and I do not intend to add to these themes as they are certain to be continued to be discussed into the future given the uncertainty of where the present events will lead the Republic.

 

What must happen however as part of desperately needed political reform, is a South African-style truth and reconciliation commission combined with an Italian-type clean hands judicial investigation under the joint supervision of the Greek Presidency and the Greek Ombudsman?s Office in order to bring to account individuals, political parties and practices since the Metapolitefsi [regime change] of 1974, to the extent that constitutional reform must take place to enable laws and loopholes enabling individuals to escape prosecution be repealed or amended, to allow this happen. This would enable to some degree a break with past practices from soft clientelism and blatant corruption, which it is universally agreed, cannot continue.

 

Ari Vlahos

Adelaide, Australia

I won?t pay for the Greeks

I work 40 hours a week, I pay 30% of my salary in tax each month, my company pays another 30% of my salary for pensions, healthcare, and so on, I work hard until I turn 65, maybe 67, I have five weeks off each year for vacation, I do not cheat the government by evading tax and lining my own pocket. Now, the Greek people want me to pay for them because they have not been paying their dues? No way. When the Greek people are mature enough to understand that they are a nation, that everyone has to contribute to the financing of that nation, then I will pay.

Ingrid Soderdal

Sweden

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