Ioannis Sarmas Caretaker PM as Greece Prepares for Elections Round 2
Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou appointed Court of Audit President Ioannis Sarmas as caretaker prime minister today as the country prepares to go to a second round of elections in June.
Sarmas is expected to form an interim government today in the run-up to the June 25 repeat elections after Greece’s New Democracy party failed to secure a majority vote last Sunday and party leaders refused to form a coalition government earlier today.
In view of the next round, President Sakellaropoulou met with the leaders of parties which managed to secure at least 3 percent of the votes to discuss the next steps.
“It is a constitutional obligation and at the same time my duty as a citizen to accept,” said 66-year-old Sarmas, who is president of the Hellenic Court of Audit, during his meeting with Sakellaropoulou.
In the runup to repeat polls, former prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, whose party clinched a 21 percent lead over opposition Syriza polling 40.1 percent last week, is hoping to secure a clear majority while opposition parties are looking to improve their ratings.
Parliament will convene on Sunday and be dissolved after the caretaker government takes over, most likely on Friday.
In the May 21 elections, New Democracy won 40.8 percent of the votes and 146 seats in the 300-seat parliament. Syriza followed with 20.1 percent (71 seats), PASOK-KINAL 11.6 percent (41 seats), KKE with 7.2 percent (26 seats) and Elliniki Lisi 4.5 percent (16 seats) and the remaining parties 15.9 percent.