NEWS

ND devises new attack on PM

New Democracy gave its new jibe against the government and Prime Minister George Papandreou – portraying them as being devoid of ideas and initiative and simply carrying out the orders handed down to them by the European Union and International Monetary Fund experts – its first airing yesterday as the conservatives begin their assault on PASOK ahead of the November local elections. It had been rumored that ND had decided to consistently refer to Papandreou as the «memorandum prime minister» and his government as the «memorandum government» in reference to the agreement that Greece signed earlier this year with the IMF, the European Commission and the European Central Bank in order to borrow 110 billion euros in return for adopting austerity measures and structural reforms. The task of rolling out the line in public was given to the party’s alternate spokesperson, Vassiliki Tzotzola, yesterday when she criticized Papandreou for surrounding himself with a number of foreign advisers. «The memorandum prime minister insists on gathering foreign advisers around him,» she said. «The question is: ‘Why not Greeks?’ and how much are these appointments costing? We expect an answer.» Tzotzola is one of the figures that ND leader Antonis Samaras has appointed since taking over the helm of the party last year and is hoping will help lead the conservatives back to power. Samaras is currently on vacation in Pylos in his homeland of Messenia in the Peloponnese and, like Papandreou, he has one eye on the November 7 local elections. Over the next few days, Samaras is expected to decide along with his aides on the party’s strategy for the upcoming campaign as well as announcing its full list of candidates.