As all the facts confirm, we are approaching the end of the fiscal adjustment programme, and of the economic aid of our partners and creditors to our country.

These days, negotiations are taking place in Brussels and in Washington, at IMF headquarters, to determine the terms and presuppositions of exiting the bailout memorandum, and the new supervisory framework for the Greek economy.

Moreover, last Thursday discussions officially commenced in European organs regarding Greek debt relief, and the accompanying growth plan.

According to the assessment of the government, we are in the last stretch of the programme and, barring any surprises, on 21 June European authorities will certify the completion of the aid programme, and then the country will autonomously manage its affairs, without external economic assistance.

If this assessment is correct, and if the Greek economy frees itself of the binding framework of the memorandums and is called upon to re-enter with its own forces the international economic system, an entire period of absolute dependency will have finished, and the country will turn a page.

Yet, the necessary debate about the transition to the post-memorandum period has not been carried out domestically.
The government has submitted to Brussels a draft development plan, and only its guiding principles have been made public. The plan itself has been kept secret from the Greek people.

Information from European power centres indicates that this is a basis for discussion but that it does not meet their expectations. Some say it reflects the ideological fixations of the ruling party. It is indicative that the main opposition New Democracy leader cast doubts on the plan and hastened to declare that he is not bound by its projections and its provisions.

Because there are major and unbridgeable differences, and because there is no mechanism to reach a national consensus on the economic model the country will follow in the new, post-memorandum era, it would be correct to submit this to the discretion of the Greek people, so that they may decide which plan is more suitable.

It would be in the national interest after the end of the current programme in August, to declare general elections so that voters may evaluate and deliver their verdict on the alternative plans and growth models for the new era.

Either way, after August, and to the degree that the completion of the programme is ensured, the country will enter into a protracted electoral period, with the danger, in the name of ridding ourselves of the memorandum, of developing a strong wave of demands and claims that can reverse the stabilisation achieved over eight years of efforts and sacrifices.

If elections are held in May, 2019, or even worse in September, 2019, the political dangers will multiply, with a possible derailment of the Greek economy.

It would constitute a crime against the country to allow such a regression.

For this reason, early elections, immediately after completion of the programme, are the correct and honourable choice. Elections in early autumn are the best choice.

The sovereign Greek people must decide, honourably and clearly, based on the submitted programmes and plans of the parties, who will lead the country in the post-memorandum era.

There is no room for games from now on. Only honourable and clear choices will lead the country into a new era.