CHP asks Turkey’s education minister about teacher probed for distributing UNCRC

CHP asks Turkey’s education minister about teacher probed for distributing UNCRC

Emine Kart - ANKARA
CHP asks Turkey’s education minister about teacher probed for distributing UNCRC

DHA photo

A Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy has raised questions in parliament about an investigation into a teacher who was censured for distributing the United Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) at school.

Copies of the UNCRC, a legally binding international agreement setting out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of every child, regardless of their race, religion or abilities, was printed by Odunpazarı Municipality of Eskişehir and distributed by teacher Zekayi Yıldırım.

CHP Eskişehir MP Utku Çakırözer filed a parliamentary question concerning the issue over the weekend, demanding Education Minister İsmet Yılmaz answer why Yıldırım is being investigated.

Çakırözer asked whether the UNCRC, which has also been approved by the Culture Ministry, was “inappropriate,” while drawing attention to the fact that while sexual assault charges against teachers are processed slowly, investigations into those who “seek to train conscious citizens” are opened forthwith.

Çakırözer also asked which unit of the ministry declared part of the book was “inappropriate.”

The Eskişehir Provincial Directorate of Education opened the case because “the book contained photographs of politicians.” 

The “politician” who had his photograph in the book is Kazım Kurt, who was elected mayor of Odunpazarı by the votes of citizens and who has been serving as mayor of the entire district, Çakırözer said.

Kurt was elected on the CHP ticket in the March 2014 local elections. 

Pointing out that the investigations of sexual abuse incidents that had occurred in many schools in cities of Turkey, including Karaman and Eskişehir, were conducted slowly despite severe public reaction, Çakırözer posed a series of questions to Yılmaz, asking: “Is there an intention to intimidate educators with the initiation of this legal action about the teacher? What harm could there be in raising awareness among students and their families about their rights in these times, just when child abuses have been occurring frequently in our country? What is the reason behind conducting an investigation into publications that can train conscious citizens so quickly while others to be conducted regarding sexual abuse incidents that took place all across Turkey, including Karaman and Eskişehir, were delayed despite all the public reaction?”