AKP PMs call to replace mayors facing terror charges with public officials
AA photoA draft of a bill, to be submitted by the Justice and Development Party (AKP), will propose that Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) mayors “embroiled in terror-related acts” will be suspended from their duties and be replaced by public executives assigned by the Interior Ministry or the governorates, a party senior has told journalists.
Mehmet Özhaseki, an AKP deputy leader in charge of local administrations, said the party has concluded its work on the draft for a “reform package” for local governments, which will be presented to Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu.
“We cannot gather all the authority at the center just because four men are making mistakes. This would be a mistake; if we centralize all the authority in the center, we ruin the system,” Özhaseki said, recalling claims that some municipalities in the southeast assisted the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in digging trenches.
Asked about the to-be-proposed regulations regarding the HDP municipalities’ alleged misuse of their duties, Özhaseki said the issue consists of two parts.
“One is about the misuse of a duty and the other is about being embroiled in terror. Notices, warnings and [prison] time are being given to those who misuse their duty or who do not conduct their duty. The second one is a whole other issue, because when you talk about terror, everything would be over, there would be no democracy,” he said.
“The issue is about suspending the duty of the ones who are linked to terror. The metropolitan and province mayors who are suspended will be replaced by officials assigned by the Interior Ministry and those town and district mayors who are suspended will be replaced by officials assigned by the governors,” he added.
Özhaseki also said new officials would be chosen from a pool of public executives rather than municipality council members and that they would have duties and authorities similar to trustees.