Ruling party eventually nominates deputies for corruption commission
Parliament decided to establish an investigation commission to probe former ministers Zafer Çağlayan, Egemen Bağış, Muammer Güler and Erdoğan Bayraktar on May 5 after deliberations between the political parties. HÜRRİYET photoThe ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has nominated its members for the parliamentary commission to investigate corruption claims into four former ministers, introducing the names to the Parliament Speaker's Office on June 26.
The AKP had previously been accused by the opposition of deliberately delaying the procedure for the establishment of the commission.
On the same day, Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek, held responsible by many for the delay in naming members of the commission to investigate the claims in the Dec. 25, 2013, corruption file, said the panel would be finalized July 1.
“Directing accusations at me is a great unfairness. The political parties that criticize me only submitted their members in the right way a few days ago,” Çiçek told daily Hürriyet on June 26. The members to be submitted by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) will be speedily studied and the announcement of the establishment of the commission can be made July 1, he said.
Parliament decided to establish an investigation commission to probe former ministers Zafer Çağlayan, Egemen Bağış, Muammer Güler and Erdoğan Bayraktar on May 5, after deliberations between the political parties represented at Parliament. Although the opposition parties have submitted their nominated members for the panel, the AKP had failed to do so until June 26.
The Parliament Speaker's Office twice urged the AKP, but ruling party officials said they were still looking for the correct candidates to nominate for the commission. The opposition parties criticized Çiçek for not efficiently urging the ruling party over the issue, with main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu slamming Çiçek for "acting as the head of the AKP’s parliamentary group."
“Members of this investigation commission should be selected from deputies who have not expressed their opinions about [corruption] issues, as they will serve like prosecutors. All members notified from the CHP were those who have expressed their judgment on this case in the past. We warned them and they renewed their list, keeping eight out of the nine names the same. I invited them for a meeting and recalled the provisions of the internal regulation and then they introduced a completely new list,” Çiçek said.
Stressing that they would speedily assess whether the AKP's submitted members can take their place in the panel or not, Çiçek said he could announce the establishment of the commission on July 1.
“After the formation of the panel, its members will convene and elect the chairman and council. If they want, they can conclude this process next week. The rest is up to the commission,” he said.
As Parliament will go into recess July 25, the commission is expected to begin its work in October. The commission is set to write a report regarding corruption claims at the end of its four-month-long mandate, which will be voted at the General Assembly.