Baykal voices veiled criticism
ADANA - Anatolia News Agency
Former CHP leader Deniz Baykal criticizes the party administration. DHA photoThe former head of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) Deniz Baykal voiced a veiled criticism of his successor Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu yesterday, as the intra-party opposition began collecting signatures to call for a convention.
“Our colleagues currently leading the party made evaluations about how the CHP could be more successful. We will see the outcome. However, judging by the results so far, it is not possible to think everything is fine,” Baykal told reporters in the southern city of Adana.
Baykal’s visit to Adana, where he met with some of the party’s 28 delegates in the city, coincided with an announcement Kılıçdaroğlu’s opponents had started collecting signatures from delegates to force a congress to amend the party’s statute.
Baykal, however, denied suggestions he was drumming up support for the extraordinary congress the intra-party opposition was seeking. “It was not a specially arranged meeting. I do not have such an objective. I met with party members, I chatted with friends and expressed my opinions,” he said.
The former CHP chairman implied the current leadership had failed to select “adequate candidates” for last year’s general elections and stressed the CHP should have used the preliminary election system within the party to select its candidates.
“The CHP has recently had troubles because the party administration’s list was prepared without input from the grassroots. We have to overcome these problems,” he said.
Baykal underlined the government’s repressive policies made it harder for the opposition but shied away from giving Kılıçdaroğlu a full mark.
“It is clear he is making efforts and working hard to strengthen the party. Everybody should respect his efforts. These efforts should give positive results. I hope such a result will occur,” he said.
Baykal emphasized he did not eye a comeback to the chairmanship and dismissed such claims as “futile speculation.”