ARMENIAN DEPUTY OUSTED AFTER JUST EIGHT MONTHS
By Jean Christou
Cyprus Mail, Cyprus
May 23 2006
TWO of the three religious minority incumbents were re-elected
on Sunday as observers in parliament, while the third Armenian
representative Dr Vahakn Atamyan, only elected last October in a
by-election, was ousted by newcomer Vartkes Mahdessian.
Atamyan, who was not available for comment yesterday, lost his seat
by only 89 votes. He garnered 47.3 per cent of the Armenian vote,
which translated into 810 voters compared to 52.6 per cent, or 899
votes, for Mahdessian.
The Armenian community is split on a number of issues, not least the
closure of the Melkonian Educational Institute.
Prior to the election, Atamyan had admitted he was not too happy about
having to through another election so soon. He told the Cyprus Mail
that he only had eight months to show some progress, and that time
was too short.
Along with the Armenians, Maronites and Latins voted on Sunday.
Maronite incumbent Antonis Hadjiroussos beat out three other candidates
to hold on to his seat with 43.7 per cent of the vote.
His nearest rival was Ioannis Poyadjis who secured 29.6 per cent.
Poyadjis was the Maronite representative in the House from 1991
Hadjiroussos said yesterday he owed a debt of thanks to those who
supported him. “I will now work to bring together the Maronite people
so that they can be united,” he said. “There is a lot of work to
Just over 3,000 Maronites voted, around half of their number on the
island, although many live in the north.
The Latin community, which had two candidates to choose from, voted
for incumbent Benito Mantovani, who secured 61.8 per cent compared
to 38.1 for rival Maria Markou. Mantovani and Markou fought it out
for a total of 372 votes.
“I am happy that the Latin community has approved of my work and
approved of what I said in my campaign,” Mantovani told the Cyprus
Mail yesterday. One of the big issues for the Latin community was
the creation of a cemetery in Nicosia.
Mantovani said he had already persuaded the government prior to the
election, to give land for the cemetery, and also a grant of £5,000
from the £20,000 he asked for. He said he kept pressing for the other
£15,000. “Today they sent us the other £15,000,” he said.
The three minority candidates do not have a vote in the House,
although all three said before the election that it was something
they would consider pushing for.
From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress