ND to support handouts to pensioners


In a bid to deflect government allegations of being insensitive to those hardest hit by austerity, New Democracy opposition intends to back a controversial amendment introducing measures to benefit low-income pensioners, Kathimerini understands.

The amendment will be put to the vote on Thursday.

In a televised address to the nation last week, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said that 1.6 million pensioners receiving up to 800 euros per month will immediately receive a special supplement which will be proportional to the pension they receive.

Conservative officials say the party would rather see the surplus be spent on measures to promote growth. They add that a more fair distribution of the surplus would take into consideration more thorough income and economic criteria.

Analysts caution that ND support for the amendment should not be interpreted as a sign of political consensus between the left-led administration and the conservative opposition.

Speaking at the American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce late Tuesday, ND chief Kyriakos Mitsotakis repeated his demand for an early election as the only solution to the country’s problems.