Ruling party's mayoral candidate Yıldırım: YSK has final say on Istanbul appeal
Binali Yıldırım, former Istanbul mayoral candidate of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), has said that the Supreme Election Council (YSK) will have the final say on the party’s pending appeal of election results.
“Our party’s and MHP’s [the Nationalist Movement Party] appeal process about the election results is still continuing at the Supreme Election Council. The YSK will, of course, give a decision regarding this issue,” Yıldırım said on April 19 during the opening ceremony of a mosque in Istanbul’s Sultanbeyli district.
“The elections are over, completed and the provincial electoral board has finalized the appeals and given the election certificate to Mr. [Ekrem] İmamoğlu. And I have conveyed my best wishes to him. This is the current situation. Best wishes to our nation, to our Istanbul. That’s all what I have to say about this issue,” Yıldırım told reporters.
Despite İmamoğlu officially taking office as Istanbul mayor this week, his election still faces legal challenges from the AKP, which cited “irregularities.”
Asked by a reporter how his political life would continue if the AKP and MHP’s appeal process is not finalize as “they wished,” Yıldırım said: “I have so far served my country by taking on various responsibilities. Whatever my position is, my office is, I will continue to serve. I have never been after position or office. My only aim while doing all these jobs, doing all these services, has been to increase our people’s life quality, to ease their lives and to see them happy.”
“The biggest office for me lies in the hearts of people. If we have contributed to that, if we have taken a distance regarding that, I would be grateful for that, but it should also be known that I am currently a member of Parliament representing [the Aegean province of] İzmir. This responsibility currently continues,” he said.
Yıldırım is the former speaker of Parliament. He resigned from his post to pursue his candidacy for Istanbul mayor.
He also served as prime minister during 2016-2018 and before that as transport minister.