Happy to form alliance with Felicity Party and Democrat Party: İYİ Party head Akşener
Gamze Kolcu – ANKARA
İYİ (Good) Party leader Meral Akşener has said she “really wants” to form an alliance with the Felicity Party (SP) and the Democrat Party (DP), two small conservative parties with no seats in parliament, ahead of the 2019 elections.
“As a transparent person, I would really want to form a coalition with the Felicity Party and the Democrat Party,” Akşener told reporters in Ankara on Feb. 28.
“I’ve told this to [SP leader Temel] Karamollaoğlu, but he also wants to nominate a candidate. That is positive. The more nominees, the merrier,” she added.
Her remarks came after the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) recently announced a “People’s Alliance” endorsing the candidacy of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and pushing for a legislative amendment formally allowing pre-election alliances.
“We can no longer take [Devlet] Bahçeli as a political interlocutor. He is now just a staff member at the [presidential] palace. He’s been given the task to attack us,” Akşener said, referring to the head of the MHP, a party she was once a member of.
“As groups that stood against a one-man regime in the [April 2017] referendum, we made the point that a strong parliamentary system would be much more beneficial for democracy and for Turkey,” Akşener said on Feb. 28, echoing Kılıçdaroğlu’s remarks said.
“I am not talking about inter-party alliances. It’s an alliance of principles,” she added.
The AKP and the MHP’s “Yes” camp narrowly won the referendum shifting the country to an executive presidential system, though voting was marred by allegations of irregularities.
Asked whether the CHP was considering forging alliances after meeting with SP leader Karamollaoğlu, Kılıçdaroğlu told daily Hürriyet on Feb. 27 that he believed the current 10 percent electoral threshold should be lowered, stressing that his CHP wanted every party to enter the elections by themselves and have the opportunity to be represented in parliament.
“Our stance is clear and simple. We want a change in the election law and the threshold to be lowered to 1 or 2 percent. We want all parties to enter elections by themselves,” he said.
However, in a parliamentary group meeting on Feb. 27, Kılıçdaroğlu appeared to give the green light for alliances.
“We will embrace everybody within the context of democracy. Not from this party or that party, but whoever defends democracy, human rights, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and conscience, and freedom of judicial independence. We will struggle for democracy with them,” he said.