AKP loses two provinces in local election reruns
Cihan photoThe ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) lost out in two provinces, but won in five of 13 district municipalities, in partial reruns of the June 1 local polls.
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) candidate Vefa Salman won in the northwestern province of Yalova with 29,227 votes, 228 ahead of the AKP’s candidate, Yakup Koçal.
AKP Deputy Chairman Abdulhamit Gül vowed to appeal the results yet again. “We have objections to around 800-900 votes,” Gül said.
However, CHP Deputy Group Chairman Muharrem İnce, who is also an MP for Yalova, said on June 1 that Salman had won and it was “a done deal.”
“We have won the election. We had already won the first time around,” İnce said.
As for the winning candidate, Salman said he was “tired of winning elections.”
Meanwhile, Sırrı Sakık, one of the key figures in the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), won the provincial election in the northeastern province of Ağrı with 23,460 votes, ahead of the AKP’s Hasan Aydın, who received 20,609 votes.
The elections in Ağrı were rerun after the AKP had repeatedly demanded that the March 30 votes be recounted. Sakık won the election in 14 recounts, before electoral authorities finally called for a rerun.
Sakık said he wanted to dedicate his victory to the miner who survived the coal mine accident in the western province of Soma and became famous when caught on camera asking to remove his boots so as not to dirty the ambulance stretcher. A few minutes after being rescued from the mine in which 301 workers lost their lives on May 13, the miner, Murat Yalçın, is heard in the video asking, “Should I take off my boots not to dirty the stretcher?” Yalçın was from Ağrı province but had moved to Soma to work in the mine.
Sakık also said “those who defend the peace process” had won in the election. “Peace has won here, so there is no loser in Ağrı,” he told daily Hürriyet.
AKP candidates won in three districts and two towns in other reruns, with Musa İhsan Uğuz winning in the Çatalzeytin district of Kastamonu, Mehmet Erol winning in the Buharkent district of Aydin, Kazim Misafir winning in the Yeşilyurt district of Tokat and Cetin Mertoğlu winning in Yozgat’s Eymir district.
In a by-election held simultaneously with the local reruns, the AKP’s Hakkı Tekin won the mayoralty of Gömü in Afyonkarahisar’s Emirdağ district.
The CHP also won in a district and a town, with İshak Gündoğan coming out on top in Eskişehir’s Mahmudiye district and Dursun Uzunca winning in Çorum’s town of Astavul.
Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) candidates won in two districts, with Haşim Şentürk winning in Bayburt’s Aydıntepe and Mustafa Karakaya in Çankırı’s Şabanözü.
The BDP’s Mehmet Emin Özkan won in Bitlis’ Güroymak district, while Felicity Party (SP) candidate İshak Birol won in Erzincan’s town of Çadırkaya.