The National Federation of Cypriots in the United Kingdom last night held its biennial elections for its 30 member Secretariat and the 5 senior officers of the organisation at an extremely well-attended general meeting.
The Cypriot diaspora in the UK has once again demonstrated unity and purpose in the pursuit of its key goals which centre on the Federation’s renewal and development, Cyprus’s struggle for freedom and reunification and, more recently, the island’s efforts to overcome the serious economic crisis it currently faces.
The elections returned a familiar set of faces to key roles, reflecting a desire among British Cypriot community representatives to leverage the Federation’s collective experience and contacts in the UK political arena and to ensure that the organisation remains embedded in the community’s grass roots.
The President of the Federation, Peter Droussiotis, briefed representatives from the various member organisations about the main activities of the Federation in the last two years and outlined the organisation’s future vision. Treasurer Ninos Koumettou, presented the Federation’s accounts for the two-year period.
Following the election of an independent electoral committee, the elections to the Secretariat were held with 30 new members being elected out of 42 candidates seeking election. The names of the newly elected members of the Secretariat are listed below.
After the election of the 30 members of the Secretariat, the Federation’s five senior officers were elected.
Peter Droussiotis was returned unopposed unanimously to a fourth term as President.
Following a contested election, the three positions of Vice-President of the Federation were filled by Bambos Charalambous, Michael Ellinas and Ninos Koumettou.
Michael Kashis was elected to the position of General Secretary of the Federation, while Andreas Papaevripides who was ineligible to stand for the position of Vice President, which he had held for successive terms over many years, due to term limits imposed by the Federation’s constitution, was returned as Treasurer.
Mr Droussiotis expressed his gratitude to all representatives for his re-election, praising the collective efforts of the entire team for their tireless work through a two-year term that included significant political challenges both in the UK and in Cyprus:
“It is tragic that Turkey under Prime Minister Erdogan still blocks progress towards a solution in Cyprus that will serve the interests of all Cypriots. For nearly 40 years, Cyprus has suffered the consequences of Turkey’s military occupation and intransigence. Now the Cypriot people are beset by economic circumstances beyond their control, made worse by unprecedented and unfair measures imposed by the eurozone and IMF establishments with little regard to the dire consequences on ordinary hard-working people.
“As the foremost representative body of British citizens of Cypriot origin, we will continue to do what we can to ensure that the island’s and our community’s voice remain central to the continuing debate around alternative solutions to the economic crisis which has engulfed Cyprus and so many other eurozone countries. We will act as ambassadors for Cyprus in order to encourage inward investment and to aid the recovery of the island’s economy.
“At the same time, the Federation will continue to focus on its political work, collaborating closely with its parliamentary and other political allies, in order to press its case for a reunited Cyprus free from Turkey’s military occupation and oppression.
“In our Vice-Presidents Bambos, Michael and Ninos, our General Secretary, Michael Kashis, and our Treasurer, Andreas, we have a very experienced, capable and hard-working team and I look forward to getting back to business with all of them.”
The elected members of the Secretariat are shown below:
In addition, Marios Minaides, Christos Karaolis, Peter Charalambous and Evi Koumi `participate in their respective capacities as President of the Greek Orthodox Communities in the UK, NEPOMAK (Global Youth Federation) President, NEPOMAK UK President and NEPOMAK UK Committee Member.