No spot for abusers in Parliament
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
People who beat their wives will no longer be allowed to become MPs. DAILY NEWS photoParliament’s Constitution Conciliation Commission has revised the deputy eligibility criteria; adopting additional restrictions on those with histories of violence, while also addressing the prerequisites for becoming a candidate.
All four parties in the commission, that is to say the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), agreed on the following clause during their meeting on May 21: “Those who lack literacy, who are restricted by law, who were sentenced to more than two years except for involuntary crimes, who committed any one of the crimes of embezzlement, extortion, bribery, theft, fraud, forgery, exploitation of belief, fraudulent bankruptcy, smuggling, rigging a bid, rigging execution of an act, crimes against sexual assault, violence against women and children, torture or crimes against humanity” shall not be elected as deputies.
The most remarkable restriction was the newly defined section “crimes against sexual immunity, violence against women and children, torture or crimes against humanity,” while some other changes included increasing the maximum number of years sentenced from one to two years, replacing the primary education requirement with literacy and omitting the part “offences related to the disclosure of state secrets, of involvement in acts of terrorism, or incitement and encouragement of such activities.”
Another change to be implemented following yet another unanimous decision was that resignation from public service will no longer be a prerequisite for deputy candidacy. Thus, public servants running for elections will be designated as on leave without payment. Yet, judges and prosecutors, members of the Armed Forces and law enforcement officers, those who work for intelligence services, civil authorities, ambassadors and rectors will have to resign in advance of putting forward their candidacy.