At his first cabinet meeting after two inconclusive elections and six weeks of turmoil had pushed Greece to the brink of exiting the euro, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said he’d had enough.
In a seven-minute speech, he warned his ministers to deliver while reducing their pay by 30 percent. “I’m not interested in good intentions,” Samaras said at the June 21 meeting, televised on state-run NET TV. “I want results.”
The 61-year-old premier has wasted little time since then haranguing European leaders to stop fanning speculation Greece’s place in the euro was less than secure. He has shepherded months of talks between his coalition partners and his troika of creditors over new austerity measures, and clinched the release last month of 34 billion euros ($45.7 billion) of bailout funds that were frozen since he came to power.
He has silenced, at least temporarily, a parade of economists, investors and politicians who predicted Greece’s departure from the euro.
Watch from Skai (in Greek) - Στο Κατάρ ο Σαμαράς 29/01/2013