Charter amendment for early local elections fails to gain requisite votes
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
AA photoA constitutional amendment that would allow upcoming local elections to be held earlier than scheduled did not gain the required votes to be approved without a referendum.
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) previously announced that they would favor the amendment. The AKP has 326 seats and the MHP has 51 seats in Parliament, adding up to 377. For constitutional changes to be approved without a referendum, two-thirds of Parliamentary – 367 votes – are required. However, during yesterday’s voting in Parliament, 360 of 440 lawmakers who appeared in the Parliament’s General Assembly voted in favor of the change while 72 opposed it.
President Abdullah Gül has the right to approve or return the bill. If Gül approves the bill, a referendum will be held within 60 days to vote on whether local elections should be brought forward.
A temporary provision was added to Article 127 of the Constitution, according to which local elections originally schedule for March 30, 2014, under the current law would instead be held on the last Sunday of October 2013.