Athienou joins other municipalities in rejecting mergers

first_imgAthienou in Larnaca will under no circumstances agree to be merged with another municipality, it declared on Wednesday.The decision was made at a meeting at which local government reform and the possible merger of municipalities were discussed.Athienou Mayor Kyriakos Kareklas briefed organised groups on the proposals of Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides for reform.All groups agreed to the creation of economically autonomous municipalities with modern administrative structures and additional executive powers but stressed they would not accept the merger of the Athienou municipality with any other municipality in the Larnaca district.“Athienou municipality is the largest municipality area wise and is not meant to be incorporated into a municipality which is smaller,” a statement by the municipality said. “It is one of the oldest municipalities of Cyprus, from 1926, unlike others which have been established in recent years, or in any case much later [than Athienou]. The size of the population should not be the most important criterion for a merger.”The inhabitants of Athienou will not feel safe in the area if a merger happens, the statement added, as any other municipality is far away from the buffer zone, meaning the outlook and needs of residents who live close to the buffer zone are much different.If asked to join another municipality, Athienou will take measures to preserve the community’s autonomy, the announcement concluded.In November this year, Petrides announced local government reform was a must. This includes the reduction of 30 municipalities to 16.“Today there are about 380 local authorities in the Republic of Cyprus: 30 municipalities and 350 communities. This number, and the fragmentation involved, deters the operation of truly autonomous administrative entities at the local level, that can have real power, know-how and resources to serve citizens, who are the real victims,” Petrides said at the time.The Athienou community is not the first to fight a merger. On December 4 Geroskipou municipality set up a campaign committee to battle its proposed merging with the Paphos municipality as part of the planned reforms.Residents agreed to the setting up of a 10-member committee tasked with safeguarding the municipality’s autonomy, arguing that Geroskipou’s viability and potential for development should not be overshadowed through a merger with a larger municipality.Geroskipou’s objection to merging with another municipality is shared by Ayia Napa whose mayor, Yiannis Karousos, declared a week earlier that the municipality’s economic success suggested it should not be merged with other less efficient local authorities.You May LikePopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndoYahoo SearchYou’ve Never Seen Luxury Like This On A Cruise Ship. Search Luxury Mediterranean CruisesYahoo SearchUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoThe Deniz boat incident showed clearly the intentions of the Turkish sideUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more