Committee to recommend lifting of Loverdos, Kyranakis immunity

Committee to recommend lifting of Loverdos, Kyranakis immunity

Parliament’s Ethics Committee will be advising lawmakers to lift the immunity from prosecution of former health minister Andreas Loverdos with regards to the ongoing investigation into the handling of the Novartis bribery case.

Loverdos’ party, Movement for Change, and governing New Democracy argued that they will back the proposal at the encouragement of the lawmaker himself, who said he welcomes a probe that will shed light on what he claims were trumped-up charges that he took bribes from the Swiss pharmaceutical firm.

Addressing the committee earlier on Tuesday, Loverdos said that he will not “tolerate” suggestions of corruption and has sought recourse over the handling of the case by judicial officials. He added that he has also filed suit against an unnamed former government official over his alleged role in orchestrating what Loverdos and other politicians implicated in the case claim was a setup by the previous administration against political rivals.

The Ethics Committee will also be advising in favor of abolishing the immunity of ND MP Constantinos Kyranakis, who has been sued by the NGO Greek Helsinki Monitor for allegedly making a racist remark in June, a few weeks before he was elected.

Kyranakis says he also welcomes an investigation into the offending comment, in which he said that a 2,000-euro bonus the government had pledged too give for babies born in the country would be reserved “for Greek children.”

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