Erdoğan says he expects record turnout in local elections
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said he expects Turkey to obtain a record turnout in the upcoming local election on March 31, urging citizens from all over Turkey to vote for his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the polls.
“I believe we will hold the elections on Sunday with one of our history’s highest participation rates,” he said at a rally in the northwestern province of Düzce, while calling on locals of the province to flock to the polls.
Turkey, so far, has managed to overcome all problems thanks to the unity and superiority of the national will, he said.
“Turkey has overcome the challenges it has faced so far with solidarity, unity and its commitment to the national will. The place where the national will appears is the ballot boxes. Any citizen who omits to vote on [March 31] should know that they leave their fate to the mercy of those who vote,” he said.
“Every vote not cast will play into the hands of those who make nefarious plans against this nation,” he said once again.
Erdoğan stressed that citizens should vote even if they feel resentment or want to give a lesson to politicians.
“Anger, resentment and the feeling to teach a lesson are one thing and owning up to the national will in the elections is another,” he added.
He also criticized candidates who were once members of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) but now running with opposition parties.
He claimed they changed sides after not being nominated as candidates by the AKP and were now running for municipal posts in the eastern provinces of Adıyaman and Van.
“Their ambition is not to serve the city, but their own interests.”
He claimed those who want Turkey to stumble want to wear out the government. He added that those circles are trying to realize these goals through the local elections.
Erdoğan said Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Sezai Temelli was “exploiting” Kurds, while also urging Kurdish voters in Ankara to vote for the AKP’s candidate, Mehmet Özhaseki.