Nicosia prepares to let central bank governor go

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades made preparations on Sunday to sack Central Bank Governor Chrystalla Georghadji, accused by Parliament of a conflict of interest, the government spokesman said.

Relations between Georghadji and the government and Parliament have been strained since it was revealed that her estranged husband worked as a lawyer for a Greek businessman who had been in a legal battle with Cypriot authorities over the collapse of a local bank in 2013.

“The President of the Republic has no other choice but to ask the Attorney-General to examine the facts, and activate the constitutional provisions for the removal of Ms Georghadji from her position,” government spokesman Nikos Christodoulides said.

Anastasiades had communicated with European Central Bank President Mario Draghi on the matter, Christodoulides said.

Georghadji, appointed in April 2014 for a five-year term, is a member of the ECB Governing Council.

Cypriot authorities maintain they were not aware when Georghadji was appointed that her estranged husband was the lawyer for the Greek businessman at the center of investigations over the collapse of Laiki Bank in March 2013.

The bank’s collapse was one of the reasons for Cyprus seeking a bailout from the EU and IMF that year.

Georghadji has denied any conflict of interest.

After a meeting with Anastasiades earlier on Sunday, she said she did not plan to resign.


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