President Erdoğan slams CHP leader over ‘legitimacy’ comments

President Erdoğan slams CHP leader over ‘legitimacy’ comments

President Erdoğan slams CHP leader over ‘legitimacy’ comments

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has lashed out at main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu over his accusations that the former’s presidency was “illegitimate.”

“It seems this person has a different understanding of what a democracy is, as he does not think about the votes of 26.3 million people, which corresponds to 52.6 percent of the overall votes. That’s why he tells his aides to ‘take to the streets,’” Erdoğan said in an address to village heads “muhtars” on Dec. 27 in Ankara.

During a parliamentary group meeting on Dec. 25, Kılıçdaroğlu said Erdoğan’s presidency was not a legitimate one and that he was not his president.

“I am not interested in being your president, Mr. Kemal. I am elected to be the president of my people,” Erdoğan said in response.

“I am elected to be the president of my people, who gave me 52.6 percent votes. You are perhaps not among this 52.6 percent of people, but you can’t turn your back on the people who cast their votes to me,” Erdoğan said.

In democracies, the legitimacy of governments is entrusted through elections, he said, adding that the current executive-presidential system requires at least 50 percent popular support, which he says nullifies questions over his legitimacy.

“Mr. Kemal, why didn’t you run for presidency; you are the leader of the CHP? That would be better for legitimacy,” he said.

“Kılıçdaroğlu has never been able to bring anything positive to Turkey and he will fail again in the upcoming local elections, because my people will never walk hand in hand with terrorists,” Erdoğan said.

The president has consistently accused Kılıçdaroğlu of supporting FETÖ and not standing against the coup plotters on July 15, 2016.

“A very good answer to those who are trying to divide this country will be given on the night of March 31,” he said, referring to the local elections.