Erdoğan urges his ruling party to work hard to win Ankara in local polls
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Jan. 1 called on his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) to work hard to win Ankara Metropolitan Municipality and its districts in the upcoming local elections, vowing to defeat the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) in two major districts, while he unveiled the names of his party’s mayoral candidates for districts in the country’s capital city.
AKP lawmakers, mayors and party officials should work 24/7 for Ankara, Erdoğan said at a ceremony where he revealed the candidates to run for Ankara in the local elections, slated for March 31.
“Our mission will fail if our link with the people is broken,” he said, noting that any lawmaker who fails to work in line with the criteria he set will “lose touch with the nation and will have no place in the AKP.”
“The People’s Alliance will bring forth change in Ankara as of April 1,” the president said, vowing to take the districts of Çankaya and Yenimahalle from the CHP.
The AKP is a political party that is “ready for any election, any time,” the president added.
Erdoğan presented three candidates along with three members of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), the AKP’s ally in elections, for three districts. The AKP decided not to put forth candidates for three districts of the capital, Etimsegut, Polatlı and Gölbaşı, opting to support the candidates of the MHP as part of People’s Alliance between the two.
“We will make success as the People’s Alliance in our capital against the malicious alliance,” he said, referring to the alliance between opposition parties.
Ankara would be better only if there is a municipality that is in harmony with the ruling party, Erdoğan added.
The AKP and the MHP had formed what they called the People’s Alliance before the June 24 elections in which Erdoğan was elected as the executive-president with the MHP’s support. The MHP had also supported an AKP-led referendum to shift the governance system from a parliamentary one to a presidential one in April 2017.
Erdoğan noted that his government aims to improve quality in education and “establish a training system that will satisfy the hearts of the children.”
“The government, for this aim, will open ‘nation’s gardens’ to keep children away from bad habits,” he stated.
The president also slammed the CHP, accusing the main opposition party of “attacking” the government in its “service to Turkey.”
“We will make Ankara a more livable, environmentally-friendly, and energy efficient city; it will be in sync with our cultural fabric and will focus on horizontal architecture,“ Mehmet Özhaseki, the AKP’s candidate for Ankara, said.