ATHENS – Former Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is under a growing assault by lawmakers in his contentious New Democracy Conservatives.
Ex-Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis joined other party officials in lambasting him and the European People’s Party for a statement that Europe’s Conservatives put out calling on Greece to accede to demands to international lenders as Samaras did.
Bakoyianni had been an outcast from the party and formed her own before Samaras let her back in. Her brother, Samaras’ former Administrative Reform Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, is said to be interested in taking over the party from him.
Greece’s new coalition, led by the Radical Left SYRIZA leader and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras who unseated Samaras is locked in tough talks with the Eurozone over restructuring a debt deal and trying to wiggle out from under the austerity measures the former Premier imposed.
The EPP, and Samaras, said in the statement that Tsipras should “respect all commitments made by the previous Greek government” and not to be an “obstacle.”
“What a shame for the EPP,” Bakoyianni tweeted. “They underestimate that in a national negotiation, we are above all Greeks.” She didn’t mention that while serving Samaras, she followed his orders on how to vote and supported the conditions he implemented.
Bakoyannis’s comment came after sharp criticism from ex-Interior Minister Yiannis Michelakis and ex-government spokesman Evangelos Antonaros, who accused the EPP of suggesting that Athens should not negotiate with its lenders but give in, as Samaras did.
Former Education Minister Marietta Giannakou joined in the bandwagon attacks on Samaras and ripped his leadership after SYRIZA walked all over the party in the Jan. 25 elections after Samaras did the bidding of the lenders and imposed big pay cuts, tax hikes, slashed pensions and worker firings tht continued here attack on Samaras’ leadership of New Democracy.
“New Democracy must be a European, democratic party,” she told Real FM. She, too, didn’t speak up before when serving Samaras who is now under siege by the people who once followed him loyally.
“It cannot be a party where the decisions are taken by two or three people. A small team of people cannot decide to take the party in one direction or the other,” she said in a shot at Samaras who is facing a leadership challenge.