Greece The Branches of Government
Sources: The Library of Congress Country Studies; CIA World Factbook
The day-to-day governance of Greece is conducted by three branches of government arranged according to the parliamentary system, with an independent judiciary and an executive branch that serves with the approval of the Assembly (see fig. 11).
The Executive Branch
The executive establishment, or government, consists of the cabinet, which includes twenty-two departmental ministries led by the prime minister. Also included are one cabinet-rank minister to the prime minister and thirty-one alternate or deputy ministers. Ministers, who need not be members of the Assembly, are chosen by the prime minister and their names submitted to the president for formal appointment. Together with the prime minister, ministers are collectively responsible to the Assembly for the formulation and implementation of the general policy of the government; each minister is also individually responsible for all acts undertaken by his office as an agency of government. Cabinet members are free to attend sessions of the Assembly, and they must be heard when they request the floor. The Assembly also may request ministers to appear before it to explain policies or to answer questions.
The cabinet must receive and maintain the confidence of the Assembly; a confidence vote must be held within fifteen days from the date a new cabinet is announced. This vote focuses on what is officially called "the government program"--a broad outline of the government's proposed policies and programs. The Assembly may withdraw its confidence by passing a censure motion, which must be signed by a minimum of one-sixth of that body's membership and be adopted by an absolute majority. Only one such motion may be introduced every six months. Ministers and their deputies who are members of the Assembly may vote on confidence and censure motions. When a government resigns after a no-confidence motion is passed, it is customary for a temporary, nonpartisan caretaker government to be formed to administer the new elections. Unsuccessful censure votes were taken in 1988 and in 1993.
The 1986 constitutional amendments enlarged the legislative capacity of the prime minister and the cabinet. Combined with the absence of internal party controls in both major political parties, this development has rendered executive actions largely unaccountable.
Data as of December 1994
NOTE: The information regarding Greece on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies and the CIA World Factbook. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Greece The Branches of Government information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Greece The Branches of Government should be addressed to the Library of Congress and the CIA.