Independent Greeks MP Haikalis claims attempted bribery for presidential vote

Independent Greeks deputy Pavlos Haikalis claimed on Friday that an unidentified individual tried to bribe him to vote in favor of the coalition’s candidate in the first round of presidential elections earlier this week. But judicial sources quoted by Skai noted later that, although Haikalis submitted a complaint to them, and an audio recording, he did not supply the name of the person who allegedly attempted the bribe.

Haikalis maintained that he had been approached just under two weeks ago to vote in favor of the government’s candidate for president, former European commissioner Stavros Dimas, after the comedian Lakis Lazopoulos, who is left-leaning, told ANT1 television channel that he had witnessed an attempt to bribe Haikalis. The latter subsequently called in to the show to confirm the claim, saying he had been offered 700,000 euros to vote for president with the offer being raised to 2 million euros when he refused.

SYRIZA spokesman Panos Skourletis also called in to the show and essentially backed the claims. Last month Skourletis testified before a prosecutor probing claims that entrepreneurs close to the government were gathering money to bribe MPs into backing the coalition’s candidate for presidential elections. That probe, originally made by Kontra News daily, was shelved due to a lack of evidence. Later last month, another Independent Greeks MP, Stavroula Xoulidou, told a Supreme Court prosecutor that someone tried to bribe her to back the coalition’s candidate for president.

Independent Greeks leader Panos Kammenos was to give a press conference at 1 p.m. on Friday.