Myrsini Loïzou, a candidate MEP for the SYRIZA party, withdrew her candidacy on Friday afternoon following reports that she allegedly committed fraud by receiving her deceased mother’s state pension.
Loïzou was accused of receiving the honorary pension granted by the Greek state to her mother for her outstanding contribution as an author, for approximately 65 months after her death.
Loïzou denies the allegations, saying that she did not commit fraud, as the pension was credited to her due to a bureaucratic technical issue, which is quite common in similar cases.
Loïzou added that she has recognized the debt and she is repaying it back to the Greek state.
However, due to the public outrage over the incident, Loïzou has decided to withdraw her candidacy on the SYRIZA ballot.
Greek main opposition New Democracy party asked for her immediate withdrawal from the ballot just after the issue of the pension became publicly known.
In a statement she published on Friday, Loïzou said that she is stepping down as a candidate for the European Parliament, adding that she does not want to distract public discourse from the main issues such as the rise of the far-right in Europe.