No fake news, Mr. Mayor!

At the time when a new big “hike” is being prepared with forgotten calls against thousands of citizens, the municipal authority rejects any request of the opposition for “haircut” of debts or repayment in installments and Mr. Bakoyannis attacks “Ef.Syn.” exceeding all limits of yellowness and demagogy.

“Claim a regulation for the waiver of past fines and modernize outdated practices,” the opposition calls on the Athens municipal authority.
“Proposals are being made to the government, but with the current framework there is no room for activism,” the municipal authority replied.

A top issue of controversy in the Athens municipal council remains that of the delayed sending of calls to thousands of car owners for violations of the Road Traffic Code. The opposition came back with proposals for “cutting” debts and repaying them in installments, insisting on attributing to the municipal authority practices of poor administration.

The municipal authority invokes its obligations under the law and at the same time prepares for future sending of notices, while the mayor himself, K. Bakogiannis, attacks “Ef.Syn.” for yesterday’s post, with a specific argument but also a number of non-existent accusations.

Why now

The head of the “Open City” returned to yesterday’s municipal council regarding the issue of delayed sending of calls (for violations dated eg 2016 or earlier) that were sent a few days ago.

Recalling that the Ombudsman has taken a stand on the practice of delayed sending of calls since 2012, as a result of which citizens have been acquitted in the courts, where they were fined and notified with a delay of 3 years – that is, there is a judicial precedent – N. Iliopoulos re-submitted proposals for: a) claim by the municipality of a new framework that allows the write-off of fines that were not confirmed within three years, b) for those calls that are not deleted to be “cut” at a rate of 50% and the remaining amount to repaid in interest-free installments.

“The Municipality of Athens must come forward and cause developments, to claim regulation for all municipalities”, called Mr. Iliopoulos. “Proposals to the government are made by the mayor,” said the municipality’s secretary general, Al. Tsiatsiamis. Citing the current legal framework, he stated that “this is what the administration must obey. “There is no room for activism and political will,” he added.

According to V. Koromantzos, deputy mayor in charge of the municipal police, the calls for violations of previous years, such as 2017, were sent now as the Municipality of Athens only in September 2019 gained access to the files of AADE to identify car details. and holder. “Once we have the data, there is no reason for delays,” he added.

“It is obvious that the dire liquidity situation of the municipality leads you to this harsh policy of collecting calls, in times when many of our fellow citizens live on 534 euros per month”, commented the municipal councilor of “Open City”, Mr. Angelakos, reiterating a proposal The Municipality of Athens should create an information system such as taxisnet, where citizens can be informed, pay and settle financial obligations and fines. “And there will be an end to political fines management practices. “As you know, it was a common practice not to send fines in the pre-election years so that the voters would not get angry,” he added.

New fines


At the same time, as “Ef.Syn.” In yesterday’s paper, the municipal authority is preparing to send the next “generation” of notices for KOK calls and any other type of debt. Yesterday, the Economic Committee of the municipality approved a tender evaluation report which entrusts a private courier company to send 770,000 mail envelopes (ie debt notices, such as calls) to debtors.

In our report yesterday we wrote that the shipment will be made in the near future. With her reply letter to “Ef.Syn.” The municipal authority of Athens clarifies that the assignment was made for notices that are to be sent in the next 3 to 4.5 years (the assignment is three years with the possibility of extension for an additional 1.5 years) – starting from today, that is, we say .

The municipality in its letter, among other things, says that “we understand the agony of the need of” Ef.Syn. ” for opposition to the municipal authority, but when it conflicts with common sense and certainly with the truth, then it ends up looking like fake news “. And – unknown by what logic – the municipality asks us: “Does Ef.Syn.” that calls for violations of the Traffic Code that have been sent and will be sent in the next 3 to 4.5 years should not be paid by the offenders; That, for example, those who violate the red light or speed limits by endangering their own lives and the lives of others should not pay the fines imposed on them by the Greek Police? “And that all those who rush to comply with the law by paying the fines, are second-class citizens?”

Finally, the municipality tells us that if we had contacted the municipal authority before the report was written, it would have given us “answers that would prevent all these vague and false formulations that may serve the opposition tactics of a newspaper, but not the truth ».

We contacted not one but two officials of the municipal authority, wanting to solve questions and ask for information. Besides, in yesterday’s report, opinions of the municipal authority are recorded. We record the (one and only) clarification made by the municipal authority after the publication of our report, although we are skeptical about whether the municipal authority will have the political courage to send in three years (ie in the pre-election period) mass and rescheduled calls like the ones he sent days ago.

Probably, then, we will return to the mayor, K. Bakogiannis, the current questions he addresses to us – which, let the mayor allow us, are formulated in an inaccurate and populist way, without having given a relevant occasion to the reports of “Ef.Syn.” . And speaking in journalistic terms, we are accused of “fake news” through a letter-monument of yellowing (in the shade of Trump’s hair). Judge the other women yourself.