Grillo denies claims his movement is undemocratic
Comedian-blogger says party critic no longer has his confidence11 September, 13:12
And he said he no longer trusts the party member who criticized the political movement.
''I will not cast anyone out, but Favia no longer has my confidence,'' Grillo said on his blog. Controversy erupted after regional councillor Giovanni Favia complained that the comedian's movement lacked democracy and risked an internal explosion.
Favia, a councillor in Emilia Romagna, said in an off-the-record interview to a television talk show that ''(Gianroberto) Casaleggio (co-founder and mastermind of M5S) is taking everyone for a ride because in our movement, democracy does not exist".
The interview was recorded in May but only broadcast last Thursday.
''The problem is that they have started a movement that might truly be a guiding light also on a global level if they could only go beyond the complicity of their proprietary system,'' Favia concluded.
M5S performed well in local regional municipal and regional elections in May, and at the end of June polls gave it over 20% of popular support, making it Italy's second-most popular party after the centre-left Democratic Party.
However, there gave been grumblings from parts of the movement over the amount of power held by its leaders.
In recent polls it has slipped to third place behind ex-premier Silvio Berluscon's centre-right People of Freedom (PdL) party.