The legal proceedings the PM calls ‘not quite faultless’

The legal proceedings the PM calls ‘not quite faultless’

Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım gave this answer when his opinion was asked on the dismissal of academics such as Professor İbrahim Kaboğlu whose only “political fault” was being a democrat, as well as journalist Ahmet Şık, who was imprisoned in the past by Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) judges and who is now arrested on charges of being a member of FETÖ: “In major incidents, will there be mistakes? Yes, there will be. It is not revenge; it is justice. We said this on day one. The rain falls on the just and the unjust alike.” 
The prime minister pointed out that to correct this, a commission to review the procedures of the state of emergency was formed.  

“Up until now, what we have done is [ensure] that those who have made these decisions will review their decisions; they will either correct their ruling or insist that their decision was right. This might not sound flawless, but we did not have any other option at the outset. One cannot correct the decision immediately; there may also be consequences. In public administration, this is not a desired situation,” he said.

I guess the prime minister knows that he has admitted that these operations were “not quite flawless” and that thousands of people have been victimized, resulting in the emptying of departments at universities. As a matter of fact, he is occupying that top position in the country to make things right. I am wondering why he still allows the “not quite so flawless” operations to be conducted. 

The prime minister has said it does not comply with rule of law to say “I am concerned that you are a FETÖ member” and start legal proceedings about that person. He has set the starting point to be at Dec. 17 – 25, 2013, so that their responsibility in the emergence of FETÖ up until that date will not be prosecuted. 

I want to ask a couple of questions to the prime minister: If it does not comply with the rule of law to start legal proceedings for a person who has not committed any terror act, then why are university teachers who have nothing to do with terror being dismissed? Why are journalists who have nothing to do with terror such as Murat Sabuncu, Kadri Gürsel, Musa Kart and Ahmet Şık in prison? Why are Nazlı Ilıcak, Ahmet Turan Alkan, Ali Bulaç, Mümtaz’er Türköne and the Altan brothers still in prison? 

Referendums and elections 

We know that one of the reasons why the undecided Justice and Development Party (AKP) voter is not able to be convinced to vote “yes” is the concern of “What will happen if a president affiliated with another political party is elected with these powers?” 

There is an interesting example that proves they are quite justified in their concerns. 

You know that almost all of the countries ruled by the presidential system have regional parliaments and states. The regions or states rule themselves; the president provides the unity of these “small states.” 
Except for one, and that is Indonesia. It is one of the most populous countries in the world. Under a unitary state structure, it is ruled by the presidential system. 

In Indonesia the president was elected by the People’s Consultative Assembly until constitutional changes in 2002. After the amendments, the president and the vice-president were elected directly by popular vote. 

In the presidential elections on Oct. 20, 2014, the candidate of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle, supported by minority parties in the parliament, Joko Widodo, won with 53.15 percent of the votes. Actually, the total of votes supporting Widodo, in elections that were held just six months ago, had only reached 40.88 percent. 

The ruling party was confident about the presidential elections with the results of the general elections, but the presidential election was won by the candidate of the minority opposition. This is a situation that frequently occurs in presidential systems. 

If the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) and opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) had not agreed on a joint candidate and made the presidential elections into a one-round election, this could have been the outcome in Turkey also.  

Things may not go as planned, the ballot box may have surprises; this is what makes a significant number of AKP voters undecided.