Members of the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne are voting on Sunday at Alphington Grammar
It’s election time for the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and Victoria (GOCMV), as its members are called to vote for the new board of management tomorrow.
The elections were called by the Electoral Committee, consisting of Kostas Spyridis (chairman), Sakis Zafiropoulos (secretary), Harris Zaverdinos, Cathy Alexopoulos, Dimitris Grivokostopoulos, Anthea Giannakopoulos, Christos Papadopoulos, Anastasios Kalamovrakas and Peter Horn. The EC was appointed at the Community’s annual general meeting in December, which saw the need for an election to be held, with the date set for Sunday 17 January.
The ballots will be open for all current financial members of the GOCMV, provided they have been enrolled for at least six months prior to the date of the election. Voting will take place at the multipurpose hall ‘Andrianakos Centre’ of the Alphington Grammar School (Old Heidelberg Rd, Alphington), from 10.00 am to 6.00 p.m.
For some time it seemed that an election would not be necessary, as the number of candidates matched the number of board members. However, a 20th candidate came forward, setting in place the course of action provided in the organisation’s statute.
According to the announcement of the Electoral Committee, the 20 candidates for the new board are: Phillip Vassiliadis, Leonidas Vlahakis, Angela Georgalis, Vasso Zangalis, Tammy Iliou, Voula (Stavroula) Kallianis, Michael Karamitos, George Koletsis, Nick Koukouvitakis, Alexis Costa, Theo Markos, Costas Markos, Jim Bosinakis, Nick Dallas, Spiros Papadopoulos, Bill Papastergiadis, Nick Parthimos, Marinis Pirpiris, Christos Sikavitsas and Constantinos Tsakoumis.
All but five are current board members – among them, current president Bill Papastergiadis.
With the exception of the newest candidate, 19 out of the 20 candidates are affiliated with the current president.
“One of the hallmarks achieved by the current board is that we are unified,” Bill Papastergiadis has told Neos Kosmos.
“There have been no internal rivalries; instead, we remain focused on the project that we have undertaken. I’ve been surrounded by talented people from a broad political spectrum; we have people from the far left to the right, working together.”
The task of an ‘opposition’ party falls to the 20th candidate, Constantinos Tsakoumis. His candidacy sparked debate among the members of the GOCMV, as many tried to dissuade him, stating that the cost of the elections is too high.
In a letter addressed to Neos Kosmos (published in Thursday’s edition), Mr Tsakoumis condemned this attempt to abort elections and states that he was personally insulted by members during the AGM.
Stating that he expects a formal apology for this behaviour he writes: “I have the right, as any other member, to offer to the organisation, given that I have served the Community as an educator for many years.”