İYİ Party, Felicity Party, Democrat Party to form ‘natural alliance’ for presidential elections
The İYİ (Good) Party will be in a “natural alliance” with the Felicity Party (SP) and the Democrat Party (DP) for the second round of the presidential elections in 2019, deputy leader Aytun Çıray has said, announcing that İYİ Party leader Meral Akşener will run for president in the first round.
“As of today, we have formed an alliance on the basis of certain principles. There will be an alliance with the SP and the DP in the second round of the presidential election,” Çıray told daily Sözcü on April 8.
Turkey is preparing for three crucial elections set to take place in 2019, one of which will determine the future president and will pave way for a new executive system approved by the April 2017 referendum on constitutional amendments.
Opposition parties have accelerated their efforts to determine their strategies for the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections, as the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) have already announced an alliance for the presidential race.
Çıray said Akşener, a former MHP lawmaker, will run for president from their party, adding that they were not considering forming an alliance for the first round of the presidential race.
According to the new system, the candidate will have to gain 50 percent of the votes to win the presidential seat in the first round. But if none of the candidates obtain 50 percent in the first stage, the first two candidates receiving the highest votes in the first stage will compete in the second round.
“There is no doubt that Akşener will be our presidential candidate. We are also sure that we will pass to the second round. Surveys, public opinion polls and fieldworks being carried out are indicating that,” Çıray said.
He stated that opposition parties agree on common principles such as “sticking to the constitution and the parliamentary system,” adding that there will be a “natural alliance” among those who believe in such principles in the second round.
“The most important of those [principles] is returning to the parliamentary system in Turkey, the preparation of a new constitution according to the new system and including civil society and constitution law experts to the process alongside receiving a minimum of 60 percent of the votes to change the new constitution,” he said.
“Collaboration is possible for the parliamentary elections, but it is too early to act on it,” he added.
CHP leader to meet Akşener
Meanwhile, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu announced that he will meet Akşener on April 12 along with CHP delegations.
Kılıçdaroğlu had earlier said the CHP is not considering forming an alliance for the elections but will carry out meetings with other parties to “ensure poll safety.”
The CHP has criticized a new legislative package that paves way for pre-election alliances and stipulates changes in the elections law, while also calling on other opposition parties to form a “unity in principles.”