‘Recovery can not come through magic but through lots of work, stubbornness and struggle’.
Although the percentages and distribution of seats may vary slightly at the end of the counting, with 35 percent of the votes the leftist formation would have 145 deputies, which means it only needs six more to get an absolute majority. Greek conservative leader Vangelis Meimarakis on Sunday conceded defeat in a general election that returned leftwing Alexis Tsipras to power.
But unlike in his first, turbulent spell in office, when Tsipras fought against the austerity policies that Greece’s creditors want, he is now expected to implement the austerity-heavy bailout program that he signed this summer.
Turnout in Sunday’s poll was just over 55%, down from 63% in January and low by Greek standards.
Greece and the Greek people represent struggle and dignity.
Jubilant supporters of Alexis Tsipras’ left-wing Syriza party cheered, waved party flags and danced after the party comfortably won Greece’s third national vote this year despite a party rebellion over his acceptance of a painful third worldwide bailout.
In interviews leading up to the election, Mr Tsipras said he had put his country above his party. An overwhelming majority of Greeks voted against the deal in a referendum, set up by Tsipras and his party in July in an attempt to strengthen his hand in negotiations with creditors. With a new €3 billion tranche of aid at stake, the new government’s first task will be to revise the 2015 budget to take into account major pension and income tax reforms.
“We have difficulties ahead of us but we also have a solid ground, we know where we can step, we have a prospect”. Leader Panos Kammenos, the former defense minister, said he would seek to form a government with Tsipras.
Over the next few months, Greece will be required to implement a programme of reforms agreed to in exchange for a 86-billion-euro (97-billion-dollar) bailout package.
There was also success for the Centrist Union – a fringe party led by Vassilis Leventis, a political pundit famous for his on screen outbursts of anger during appearances on his long-running late-night TV show.
“I congratulate him and call on him to form the government that is necessary, and bring the (proposal) to parliament”. The final number of parties entering parliament will dictate how numerous 300 seats each party will have, which will affect the winner’s choices in seeking coalition partners.