CHP again tells PM to resign for ‘fair race’ with İhsanoğlu

CHP again tells PM to resign for ‘fair race’ with İhsanoğlu

CHP again tells PM to resign for ‘fair race’ with İhsanoğlu

CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu speaks during a parliamentary group meeting, July 8. AA Photo

The leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has renewed his call for Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to resign from his post for a fair race with the opposition’s joint presidential candidate, Ekmelettin İhsanoğlu.

“If you claim to run for presidency, you should fulfill two things: First, give up your lies. Second, run against Mr. Ekmeleddin under equal conditions. If you don’t resign from the Prime Ministry, you are not racing equally,” CHP head Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said in his weekly parliamentary group meeting on July 8.

“There is a concept of equality of opportunity. It’s the core of democracies. You don’t believe in it. Equality of opportunity applies to the economy, education, social life and politics,” Kılıçdaroğlu added.

The opposition has repeatedly argued that Erdoğan should resign from his position in order to run for presidency, but government officials say there is no legal obligation for the prime minister to resign. The CHP and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) appointed Ekmelettin İhsanoğlu, an academic and former head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), as a joint presidential candidate.

“You will see that he will perfectly represent Turkey in the East and in the West,” Kılıçdaroğlu said, referring to Erdoğan’s vows to be a “partisan” president. “The presidency is not an office to do politics in. Those who occupy this position should be impartial. But he [Erdoğan] says he won’t be impartial. That means he won’t take the presidential oath, which refers to the 'impartiality' of the president.”

Kılıçdaroğlu underlined that being impartial meant being at an “equal distance from all political parties,” and Erdoğan had already confessed that he will not be at an equal distance from parties.

Once again, the CHP leader brought the corruption claims about Erdoğan and his family to the agenda, stressing that only those who were “fully clean” deserve the presidency.

“He recently declared the list of his assets. I noticed that he has no house. We should collect money to buy him a house. I’m really curious ... This man has villas in Çatalca, Kısıklı [in Istanbul] and Urla [in İzmir]. To whom do they belong?” he said.

Arguing that Erdoğan “frequently lied” on important issues, Kılıçdaroğlu also suggested that the prime minister’s knowledge of history was based on “rumors disseminated by his advisors.”

“He once said, ‘My grandfather was martyred in Sarıkamış [a battle during World War I]. When we checked the military records, we found that it was another of his lies. He is the world’s greatest liar. I have not seen anyone else lie like him,” he added.