Stefanos Kasselakis won the leadership of left-wing SYRIZA with 56.91% of the elections votes on Sunday. The new leader of Greece’ main opposition party will not be able to represent the party in the parliament, though, as he did not manage to get elected in the parliamentary elections in July 2023.
His rival in the party leadership, ex Labor Minister, Efi Achtzioglou, received 43.31% by 75% of counted votes. Some 136,000 party members voted on Sunday, around 10,000 less than in the first round, a week earlier.
The new leader of SYRIZA is a 35-year-old businessman, born in Athens but a resident of USA since he was 14 years old. He has no prior political experience and little knowledge of the Greek realities and history incl the one of Cyprus.
He landed in Greek politics out of the blue and became known in the Greek public after August 29, when he declared his candidacy for the left-wing party. Less than a month later, he found himself leading a party with history with his campaign to be based mainly in Public Relations via social media and short videos than in ideology.
Stefanos Ksselakis has been speaking of a “contemporary, patriotic, ruling Left.”
Apolitical Kasselakis seems to express the will of SYRIZA members for ‘change’ after four years of failing to represent a serious opposition towards conservative New Democracy of Kyriakos Mitsotakis as well as the lack of desire to be in the government again.
Some 136,000 party members voted on Sunday, around 10,000 less than in the first round, a week earlier.
Now everybody is waiting for possible turbulence including diaspasi inside the party with the SYRIZA old guard to have sharply criticized Kasselakis for his absence of politics in his campaign.
Read also: The phenomenon Kasselakis: Captain America for PM of Greece
Kasselakis is apparently the favorite of former leader and prime minister Alexis Tsipras, who according to rumors, he was forced to resign by a part of the party’s old guard after failing three elections – one in 2019, two in 2023.
PS if the new leader is the favorite of the old leader who didn’t want the party to rule again and refuse to make a dynamic opposition to ND, how will Kasselakis manage it?
Another “miracle” in the Greek political scene….
On the funny side, all three leaders of Greece’s biggest parties New Democracy, SYRIZa, PASOK have their origin in Crete.