The new Prime Minister, Antonis Samaras, has been struck down by a problem with his eyes, forcing him to miss this week’s crunch EU summit that aims to solve the euro’s ongoing crisis. And yesterday his finance minister, Vassilis Rapanos, went one step further – quitting less than a week after being appointed, citing ill health.
Rapanos, who had been tasked with rescuing the indebted country’s finances, had begun suffering from stomach pains and nausea. Not a huge surprise, perhaps.
Prior to his resignation, both Rapanos and Samaras had posted sicknotes to their bailout lenders in Brussels, instead tasking the foreign minister and yet another former finance minister to go in their place.
And this isn’t the first time senior Greek politicians have broken down in the midst of the crisis. Late last year socialist minister Evangelos Venizelos was hospitalised with stomach pains as the debt fever rose.
Could it be that Greece’s plight is taking its toll on government leaders?
“They should have one or two weeks off to recover completely,” said Neil Shah of the Stress Management Society, recommending that they learn from crisis-hit political figures from Europe’s modern history.
“Churchill had a nap every afternoon, which allowed him to relax,” Shah told The Capitalist. “He was under a lot of pressure.”