Clues for the new era
The new prime minister will be known in 12 days. All the possible candidates have exclusive characteristics. However, in this race, the one who President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan wants to work with in the future will be the one selected.
Meanwhile, those assessments about the profile of the new prime minister were not welcomed. Aydın Ünal has written Erdoğan’s speeches for years; he knows the mind of Erdoğan best. Erdoğan, who has always targeted high standards in politics, would never wish for a low-profile prime minister, would he? Ünal did not mention it with that intention. He tried to model the president-prime minister relationship in the new period. But in communication, most of the time perception exceeds fact. Thus, this profile issue which caused a disturbance was rapidly lifted from the agenda.
At the congress on May 22, the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) will not elect its leader. The leader of the AK Party is apparent: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. There will not be two separate power equilibriums in the new period. The “powerful president-powerful prime minister” model has been shelved.
The new era in the AK Party will be built on two pillars: A strong AK Party and a harmonious government.
During the convention, the party and the government will be renewed. Major changes are expected in the AK Party’s Central Decision and Executive Board (MKYK) and the cabinet, which were mostly designed by Erdoğan, but outgoing Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu also had his space. This time a party administration and cabinet based on harmony and loyalty is on the agenda.
Possible names for the position are Transportation Minister Binali Yıldırım, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ and Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş. But Energy Minister Berat Albayrak is also in the equation. Erdoğan will be conducting talks but he has not pointed to a name yet.
The prime minister has resigned in Turkey; the ruling party will select its chair in an extraordinary congress. These are very risky periods politically. Despite this, there is no uneasiness or expectation of a crisis. Because everybody knows the AK Party has a strong leader. Erdoğan will ensure that the convention runs smoothly and a new prime minister will be elected without any instability. The strong leadership of Erdoğan has become the assurance of stability in Turkey. The general opinion is that because Erdoğan is at the wheel, the AK Party ship will float. Credit should be given to Davutoğlu here. He did not hesitate in giving up his post; he was keen that the AK Party and Turkey were not damaged during the transition.
He conducted a clean Prime Ministry, but what made him big was his farewell.
When Abdullah Gül was the president and Davutoğlu was the foreign affairs minister, we were in New York for the U.N. Security Council meeting. One evening Davutoğlu hosted me and two more journalists, his wife Sare, his daughter and his son-in-law. It was a family atmosphere. I had asked him how he was enduring all of this. It was a time when everybody was giving him a hard time. He had answered, “If the Islamic world was not in this situation, I would not have stayed one day; I would go back to the university.” He did not want me to write it that day. But I can write it today.
The real identity of Davutoğlu is a teacher. He gave many lessons but his most important lesson was his dignified stance while he was leaving.
In the AK Party process for the new prime minister, one should not look at the profile but at the model.
The codes of the new era for Erdoğan are “a strong AK Party and a harmonious government.” For this reason, I am saying do not look at the profile, look at Erdoğan.