Tsipras asks for off-the-agenda parliamentary debate on soaring prices

he leader of main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance, Alexis Tsipras, on Tuesday asked for an off-the-agenda debate in parliament to discuss the unprecedented wave of soaring prices “and the government’s hesitation to take real measures of support.”

Tsipras submitted the request to Parliament President Konstantinos Tasoulas in a letter where he noted that “the unprecedented price hikes, given that last month we had the highest rate of inflation in the last decade (2.2 pct), drastically reduce the purchasing power of households so long as salaries remain stuck at the same level as the last three years, and create an unbearable increase in the operating costs of businesses.”

He strongly criticised the government, which he said was “simply looking on, offering reassurance and taking inadequate and ineffective measures,” to counteract the situation, and had effectively “left the overwhelming majority of society at the mercy of the crisis of soaring high prices.”

He noted that the government was avoiding specific measures to boost employee incomes, such as raising the minimum wage, reducing special consumption taxes for fuel and imposing strict controls against the formation of cartels.

He also accused the government of not passing measures in order to discourage profiteering in the electric power market and deliberately changing the role that the Public Power Corporation traditionally played in setting wholesale prices for electricity.