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Greek conservative party is favoured to win majority in second general election in five weeks

ATHENS (AFP) – After an inconclusive election in May, Greece returns to the ballot box next Sunday with conservative former prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on course to win a second straight four-year term.

Polls show that Mitsotakis’ New Democracy party is in line to be the clear winner, with between 40 and 43.9 per cent of the vote.

Mitsotakis last month cruised to victory with a score of 40.79 per cent, more than 20 points ahead of his nearest rival, former leftist prime minister Alexis Tsipras.

But he fell short of a workable Parliamentary majority and declined to form a coalition government. A Pulse poll for private Skai TV last week said nine out of 10 New Democracy voters would vote conservative again yesterday.

Mitsotakis said that under his stewardship, Greeks paid lower taxes and the country became a success story attractive to investors, posting growth above the European average and returning tourism revenue to nearly pre-pandemic levels.

“I promise Greeks that (economic) growth will continue,” he told Skai TV last week.

“We are more experienced, more prepared and more determined.”

Mitsotakis’ critics counter that he showered billions of euros on political allies and friendly media, tried to bury a major wiretapping scandal and attempted to dodge responsibility for Greece’s worst train disaster in February.

This time, Harvard graduate and former McKinsey financial consultant Mitsotakis faces a challenge on his right that could determine the size of his Parliamentary group.

Leader of the centre-right New Democracy party Kyriakos Mitsotakis talks to supporters at a polling station in Athens, Greece. PHOTO: AP