Published On: Sun, Apr 22nd, 2018

Important developments in Turkey’s political arena toward elections

Important developments in Turkey’s political arena toward elections

Meral Aksener, Leader of Iyi Parti

Turkey is approaching the most important elections in its history
in which deputies and the president will be elected. It goes without saying, there will be a tough challenge between those in favor of the presidential system (supporters of Erdoğan) and those in favor of the democratic parliamentary system – the secular group who believe this incident would be their last chance to return to parliamentary system and true democracy with actual rule of law and justice.

They believe if Erdoğan is re-elected as the next president he will have upgraded and legalized his power to rule the country with an iron-fist (some call it a one-man regime) with all the authority to have the final say regarding all issues to include legal, economic and even social matters, in the country. The parliament will still exist but with very minor authority or control over the president.

The interesting part is the current president already has (or uses) the power to realize almost anything he would like to, due to his excessive power in the parliament (thanks to the majority of the ruling party) and the public has been observing how he could rule the country under a one-man regime – as he has been doing so under the STATE OF EMERGENCY status since 2016. Many believe the worst part is that the President is now used to this power and in fact he would not prefer to let it go.

On the other hand, there is a group of 50 percent claiming the presidential system would be a disaster for Turkey. They comment that Erdogan has been using authority excessively already (owing to his power in the parliament) and it would be impossible for Turkey to return to democratic parliamentary system if this situation is legalized via elections.

Meanwhile, at a time when the AK Party was considered to have the strongest prospects to win the elections with no doubt, an unpleasant surprise for the president came out of nowhere; Ms. Meral AKSENER,  a former member of the National Movement Party (MHP) who was thrown out  by its leader BAHÇELİ, founded a new party called IYI Parti (meaning good) upon great demand from millions of citizens and started to become a nightmare for AK Parti and MHP as she enjoyed great acceptance and support from the public.

In this atmosphere, the MHP leader who used to display the toughest opposition against the ruling party earlier, preferred to take refuge under the AK Party wings and formed an electoral alliance with the ruling party with the ulitmate goal to get seats in the parliament, obviously which he otherwise could not even dream of. While doing so, the leader of MHP had to make a very sharp turn in discourse, contrary to his earlier statements and started to support and even praise almost all practiced by his once opponent which in turn caused him to lose even more support – that is more votes.

Moreover, in the meantime, the impression started to shape up in the eyes of the public that AK Party could seek ways to block IYI Parti from running in the elections on grounds it has not fulfilled all necessary procedure and formalities on time, to run in the elections –  that is despite said party has fulfilled all required formalities in question.

Certainly, the authority with the final word here is the Supreme Election Board which is allegedly influenced by the administration and has been part of some unlucky mis-conduct in the last elections, to be in favor of the current administration – as claimed by opposition and many circles.

At this point, as everybody thought the authority would somehow deny IYI Parti  the right to run in the elections, something very unusual happened and in order to avoid any undesired future possibilities, the CHP voluntarily handed 15 MPs from its own party to the Good Party, so that the Good Party could have a group of 20 deputies in the parliament automatically entitling it to participate in the election. In other words, the CHP has put end to an eventual game even before it started and received great applause, especially from the secular and democratic groups.

Now the elections are approaching and it is the turn for AK Parti and especially the MHP and its leader (who would be facing the risk of being wiped out of the political arean had he not taken shelter under AK Parti wings) to think.

ADDITIONAL NOTE (update): Right after this article was published the Supreme Election Board announced that IYI Parti could run in the elections – That is “after it had already secured its position”. Many Thanks to the Supreme Election Board 🙂

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