Greek Pirates are ready for a double election battle: Starting this Sunday, 18 May 2014, at local level and continuing the next one, 25 May, with paneuropean elections running in coalition with the Ecologists Greens.
Many members of PP-GR are cooperating as candidate for municipal or regional councillors on other parties’ or indepedent ballots. The Pirates are present in seven municipalities and three regions and thus mixing and spreading the Pirate virus inside the Greek political system. Also, for the first time ever, a Pirate crew in Greece is running for the municipality of Thessaloniki, with a professor of programming, for 28 years, at head.
Dimitris Papamichail, member of PPGR, is one of the youngest – if not the youngest – candidate for Mayor in Greece. He is on top of the ballot of “Pirates in Thessaloniki”, an autonomous and independent ballot that set sail for the second largest municipality of Greece. Polls show that Papamichail could reach the limit of 3% needed to enter the city council. Their logo is based on the symbol of Thessaloniki. The logo displays the “White Tower” but with a pirate flag swaying.
While talking to Pirate Times about the mission for “Pirates in Thessaloniki” Papamichail emphasized: “The movement consists of predominantly young people, non-aligned politically. The average age of our candidates is 31 years old and we intend to remain youthful and independent Pirates, as we are working behind the scenes all of the time. Thessaloniki is our entire world!”.
Pirate Times: Give us a description of “Pirates in Thessaloniki”
Dimitris Papamichail: What do “Pirates in Thessaloniki” do? They solve problems!
We implement goals and ask the young people of the city, or at least those who think young, to help us to be represented in the City Council and become a platform for electronic transparency! For two years now, Pirates work daily in all areas! We live in Thessaloniki, think about it and we like it! The global Pirate movement is active in more than 56 countries. It’s time to act in the city of Thessaloniki and show that, based on our three core principles: transparency in the state, protection of privacy and individual rights. Free software in all areas and willingness to work without pointless promises, we can implement simple suggestions that will make our municipality more effective by reducing operational costs and, finally, treat contributory to the taxpayer of the citizen. The time has come, and the average age of the City Council shall be lowered from 54 years we are in now and bring new and fresh ideas, easily and readily implementable. “Pirates in Thessaloniki” are running in these municipal elections independently and without any political interests”.
Pirate Times: Which are the main problems for Thessaloniki?
Dimitris: The city’s major problem is the lack of innovation. Transparency, of course, is something that has not improved in years, certainly is our priority. Based on digital platforms citizens can post their questions or proposals, put them in priority and then solve. The portal of the municipality can be renamed and provide all the documents needed by the residents.
Pirate Times: What are the key recommendations of “Pirates of Thessaloniki”?
Dimitris: We released our programme concerning a lot of aspects seen through a contemporary perspective. We believe that each store that delivers open wifi for the residents must have 5% discount on the annual tax rate. All computers of the municipality can cooperate and mine for litecoin that can provide up to 1500 € per month revenue. Open source software benefits an amount of more than 25.000 € per year. We can offer the first 2 hours parking for free in the Municipal parking areas and charge only 1 € for all other hours. Direct replacement of all non LED bulbs means 33 % savings in energy consumption annually.
Pirate Times: If elected, what would be the first issue that you will address?
Dimitris: Listen to young people! Encourage them to talk about their problems and try to solve them.
The Greek pirate candidates cover 7 municipalities and 3 regions, almost half of Greece’s population. The local elections will take place this Sunday (18th of May).
Athens, Thanasis Gounaris, Markos Papaioannou
Egialeia, Vasiliki Dimitriou
Kavala, Stathis Symeonidis
Lamia, Giorgos Kallioras
Chalkis, Stathis Leivaditis
Chania, Antonis Trochalakis
Thessaloniki, “Pirates in Thessaloniki”, containing several members and friends of PP-GR