PASOK heading for party congress, leadership contest

PASOK is due to hold a party congress in March, when the leadership of the party will also be at stake, after a poor showing in the elections.

Sources said that PASOK leader and outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos is prepared to stand aside and allow a new leader to take over the party after the Socialists garnered just 4.68 percent – the lowest among the seven parties that entered Parliament.

Former Deputy Defense Minister Fofi Gennimata and ex-Education Minister Andreas Loverdos are expected to be the only PASOK veterans that will challenge for the leadership at the congress after a number of prominent members, such as Michalis Chyrsochoidis, failed to be elected.

Other possible candidates are the party secretary Nikos Androulakis and fellow younger member Kyriakos Pierrakakis, both of whom would be able to argue that they are leading a rejuvenation of PASOK, which has seen its support plummet by almost 40 percentage points since October 2009.