With the election of Alexis Tsipras as SYRIZA President at 93,54% ( as the only candidate), the election of the new Central Committee and the Auditing Committee, the Second SYRIZA Party Conference came to an end this Sunday.
With a post on Twitter Tsipras spoke of the beginning of a new relationship with society, giving a glimpse into the policy to be followed from now on, by opening up to society and through the participation of new ‘blood’ in party organisations.
What SYRIZA lacks on an organisational and communication level and the introversion that characterises the party has been widely discussed both in the delegates speeches as well as in conversations between officials and party members. The keynote speech by Alexis Tsipras and the invitation sent to members of the party and society was common ground for many of the interlocutors that spoke with IBNA at the conference.
The undisputed winner of the Conference was certainly Alexis Tsipras. The President of SYRIZA is now marking a new path of realism and extroversion, without compromising the social sensitivity and left ideology that dominate government planning but also fall short on implementation.
The Greek Prime Minister, is now more than ever showing how much he wants to lead a large part of society, that is ideologically heterogeneous but has strong footholds in democratic sensibilities, and not just a party mechanism.
Tsipras hopes that the opening to society will bear fruit in the not so distant future and will liberate him from the political party shackles that often inhibit him in government decisions. It is not by chance that he stated that “it is more important for a Party member to be an elected member of the Political Secretariat, namely leadership, rather than be a minister.”
Clearly Alexis Tsipras believes he can and wants to take Greece forward, to pull it out of the crisis and remain in a new and and slowly transforming Europe. For this to happen though, he needs to implement his commitments towards the country’s creditors. Only then will he get the assurance for debt impairment, something he believes will attract investors thus giving hope for the development of the Greek economy. And of course this development will be positively passed through to the most vulnerable social classes.
The first seven months of the SYRIZA government, but also complaints voiced by ‘party’ ministers during every effort for the implementation of the 3rd Memorandum, “force” Alexis Tsipras, to make a separation between government and party. This will also clearly be seen at the forthcoming government reshuffle with the departure of several high-profile SYRIZA members from the Government, according to IBNA information.
Undoubtedly Alexis Tsipras has a difficult task ahead, as he has to manage the home front comprised of several of his party comrades but also creditors abroad.
Circumstances however are in his favour, with the exodus of members of Panagiotis Lafazanis’ Left Platform, meaning that at least from an organisational perspective SYRIZA has collapsed regionally. In the event of a flow of new members these will certainly come from the old former parties like PASOK and they will have the right organisational experience. This will help in building the new SYRIZA thus weakening introverted party officials.
On the other hand the opposition shows that it cannot go up against SYRIZA without reaping the social discontent of its policy. As far as outside of Greece is concerned, strong alliances have been built in a faltering Europe with an increasingly controversial Germany. Alexis Tsipras’ initiatives and the fluidity of EU politics have rendered the Greek Prime Minister into one of the main players of the changes that are being prepared in Europe.
The stakes are high for the President of SYRIZA. As he stated the next three months will be critical. Within this tight timeframe he is called to prove that he can do it and not be just “a short Left break” and ultimately the Lefts tombstone./ΙΒΝΑ