It was meant to be a day for Greeks to unite.
But the unveiling of the newly restored Acropolis instead turned into another day of protest over the country’s cash crisis.
As the Culture Minister unveiled the recently reassembled Parthenon, one of Greece’s most popular attractions, around a 100 short-term construction workers demonstrated over alleged unpaid wages.
Used by successive governments since the 70s, some labourers complain they have not received any money for up to a year.
“The Culture Ministry has a huge need in terms of personnel and it’s been easy for all governments to use us as it’s a vote winner. But they’ve changed personnel here like people change their shirts,” said Nikos Hazomeris, President of the Culture Ministry’s short-term contract workers’ organisation.
Thousand of archaeological site workers stand to lose their jobs because of Greece’s financial woes.
The government, however, has pledged to continue the restoration work which is likely to continue for another decade.