Opposition SYRIZA lawmaker Pavlos Polakis was referred to Parliament’s Ethics Committee by House speaker Konstantinos Tassoulas on Tuesday for violating debate rules and failing to comply with repeated calls to order.
Tassoulas’ move comes a day after the controversial leftist lawmaker was asked to step down from the podium for going off-topic during a debate on a Development Ministry bill, to launch into a rambling attack on a high-ranking governing New Democracy official over an unrelated topic, and specifically the Novartis affair.
After repeatedly cautioning Polakis that he was in violation of debate rules, the coordinator of Monday’s discussion, Haralambos Athanasiou, was eventually forced to switch off the MP’s microphone and pause the session for half an hour, during which Polakis continued his rant regardless. As a result, the session was cancelled, with the remaining speakers moved to Tuesday’s agenda.
Describing Monday’s session as “disheartening,” Tassoulas on Tuesday noted that “Parliament is not just any place where we can take the stand to say whatever we want and do whatever we want.”
The decision prompted a reaction from SYRIZA, with the leftist party’s spokesperson, Yiannis Ragousis saying the decision to stop Polakis’ speech was “unconstitutional and putschist.”
In the meantime, responding to the aspersions cast by Polakis in his address on Monday, Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis said that he plans to file suit against the former leftist health minister. The pair reportedly came close to blows on Monday, before the controversial discussion.