Dimitris Christofias, victorious Presidential candidate and General Secretary of the Central Committee of AKEL, addressed many thousands of supporters at a packed, militant and enthusiastic mass rally at the crowded “Eleftheria” indoor stadium last night - but also many other thousands of people gathered outside the stadium - and stated the following after being proclaimed President by the chief returning election officer:
“The people have voted.
I warmly thank all my fellow citizens who have shown their trust in me with their vote. I would especially like to thank AKEL, my glorious Party, who had proposed my candidacy and all those who supported me from the very beginning up to the first round of the Presidential elections: Movements and Parties, the United Democrats, the Forum for the Regrouping of the Centre and the Election Support Committees all over Cyprus who fought all these months with self-sacrifice to bring this great victory. I thank the leaderships and the voters of the Democratic Party DIKO, the Socialist Party EDEK and the Ecologists, whose strong support in the second round of the election contributed decisively to the final result. I thank and also honour all those who voted for my rival candidate.
At this point I call on you to applaud my rival. I honour Mr. Kasoulides. Beyond our differences, above all we are united by a common ideology, our Cyprus and its salvation.
I warmly thank the outgoing President Mr. Tasos Papadopoulos for his services to the country and for our close cooperation with whom our communication will be maintained and whose participation in the National Council is given.
Our democracy worked excellently, as it will work excellently throughout my term in office.
I would like to warmly thank the President of Greece, the Greek Prime Minister and many members of his Government, as well as all the political parties of Greece for the wishes which we have already received and for their support to our task in hand.
Our pre-election commitments are a contract of honour that we have signed. They are a contract of honour that we have signed with the people, with all of you. We will impliment them with consistency and punctuality. As President of the Republic of Cyprus I have the responsibility of uniting and representing all the citizens. As President of the Republic of Cyprus I have the responsibility to unite and represent all citizens. You know very well that we have a clear and noble vision: a vision to reunite our Cyprus, to free Cyrpus from the occupation and its consequences, turn it into a common homeland for all its children, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.
At this point I would like to thank the Turkish Cypriot leader Mr. Mehmet Ali Talat who phoned and congratulated me. We are looking forward to a substantial cooperation to the benefit of both communities, first of all for a just, viable and workable solution to our problem. I want to thank the President of the Republican Party Mr. Ferdi Soyer. I want to thank Mr. Izzet Itzhan of the United Cyprus Party and all the leaderships of the Turkish Cypriot progressive forces who have phoned and congratulated me. I want to warmly thank the leaders of the Turkish Cypriot trade union organisations who visited the election campiagn office tonight and congratulated me.
We are persuing a just solution, a solution based on the resolutions and decisions of the United Nations, the High-Level Agreements, European and International Law. A solution with the implementation of human rights, including of course the right of return and property of the refugees, the withdrawal of the occupational troops and settlers, to fully verify the fate of the missing persons.
We will fight, united, for a just solution. Our Cyprus, as a member of the EU, is proceeding with dignity and pride. Our European course offers the possibility to utilise opportunities and for us us to fight for the particular interests of our people and country. I extend a hand of friendship and cooperation to the Turkish Cypriots and their political leadership. I urge them to work together with us for our common goal - for the good of our Cyprus and its people, and for a homeland of peace, cooperation and progress, a “golden-green leaf” at the edge of the Eastern Mediterranean Sea.
Our vision is also for a more just society, with economic development that will go hand in hand with more social justice in a modern sensitive and humane state which will stand at the side of all our people who are in need. We are proceeding with concrete priorities regarding education, health, combating the plague of drugs, the security of citizens, the all-round development of culture and sports, the respect of the environment and sustainable development. However, the precondition for achieving all of these objectives is a strong economy. We will continue the tried and tested model of the mixed economy and we will unite the forces of entreprenuership and the working people and enhance even more the cooperation between the state, private and cooperative sector, as well as the cooperation of the social actors. As I have already pledged, the Government I will form will be made up of competent and progressive personalities that will express and represent all of the socio-political spectrum.
I repeat, with all the force of my soul, that I am a President from the people and will be a President for the people and will respect the variety, the national, religious and cultural traditions of each person, but also with particular emphasis on everything that unites Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Maronites, Armenians, Latins who belong to one country, have a common future - the future of unity, peace and prosperity. Placing people at the centre of our attention, we unite forces, we unite our people and we unite our Cyprus.
Long live the undaunted Cypriot people!
Long live our Cyprus, the common homeland of all its children!
I thank you all very much, I wish you all the best. Starting from tommorow we begin work all of us together.