Institutions at low ebb

Political parties are still the least trusted institutions in Greece and confidence in the media and the Church has dipped over the last year, according to a Public Issue survey carried out for Sunday's Kathimerini. In an index of 48 institutions, political parties came rock bottom for the second year running, as only 8 percent of those questioned said that they had faith in them. In fact, all political institutions fared badly in the poll, carried out at the end of a year in which the political system has been dogged by corruption scandals. Standing just one place above the parties are governments, which are only trusted by 10 percent of respondents. Only two in 10 Greeks have any confidence in ministries and only a third of those questioned put any faith in Parliament. The only member of the political establishment to retain considerable credibility is the president of the Republic, who ranks third. Almost nine in 10 Greeks have faith in this institution, even though the person who fulfills this role has mostly ceremonial powers and duties. The president is only outpaced by the National Meteorological Service, in second place, and the fire service, which 92 percent of Greeks trust. The year's events have also damaged the confidence that people have in several institutions outside of politics. The Church, for instance, has slipped from 15th place to 22nd, with Greeks almost evenly split between trusting and distrusting this institution. The scandal involving the Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos is likely to have tainted some people's view of the Church. People's confidence in the media, particularly newspapers and television, has also taken a knock. Radio remains the most trusted form of information, even though it slipped one place from 10th to 11th. However, newspapers fell from 23rd place to 31st, as just one in three readers say they trust what they read. Television also went down one place to 42nd with 62 percent of just over 1,000 people questioned saying they have no faith in this form of media.