Prominent MHP lawmaker resigns to join dissident Akşener’s new party

Prominent MHP lawmaker resigns to join dissident Akşener’s new party

Prominent MHP lawmaker resigns to join dissident Akşener’s new party

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Koray Aydın has resigned from his position as a deputy of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and has signaled that he will join a new party set to be founded by Meral Akşener, a dissident former MHP member. 

“I have contemplated this decision for a long time. I have asked my friends and family and finally I have come to a point where I have to make the most difficult decision of my life,” Aydın said in a press conference in Ankara on Aug. 22, announcing his resignation from MHP. 

Trabzon MP Aydın is the only MHP member left among the dissident names that proposed Akşener as a candidate for MHP leadership in the quashed extraordinary congress attempt in 2016. 

Ümit Özdağ, Sinan Oğan and Akşener had been dismissed from the party following the frustrated attempt to hold the congress, while Aydın continued in the MHP. 

MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli had applied to the judicial authorities over the attempt to call an extraordinary MHP congress to challenge his leadership and it was controversially annulled in 2017 by the Supreme Court. 

“I have served in every stage of the MHP, starting from its youth branches. I was an assistant and a son of [former MHP leader Alpaslan] Türkeş. But the founding principle of the MHP and the idealist [ülkücü] movement has been abandoned by the current administration,” Aydın said on Aug. 22. 

“MHP officials ignored the idealist movement by acting along with the rulers alone. Our congress was prevented from being held, despite the signatures. An abominable court order cut our path, while the MHP has started to dismiss many names,” he added. 

After MHP head Bahçeli formed an alliance with the ruling Justice and Development Party (MHP) to support the constitutional amendment ushering in an executive presidential system in the April referendum, a number of deputies announced their resignation from the party. 

“While the country has been left to one person’s initiative following [the constitutional] referendum, the one-man regime in the MHP has also become permanent,” Aydın said. 

Akşener’s new party

Following her dismissal from the MHP and the constitutional referendum, Akşener accelerated her efforts to form a new political party, which is set to be officially founded in October. 

“I see supporting this new struggle as a duty,” said Aydın, adding that he will be joining the new party once it is established. 

The new party will offer a political alternative that “builds on the founding principles the Republic of Turkey,” he stated.

“We will stand for the integrity of the homeland and we want to end all kinds of injustices. We will hold the rulers to account at the ballot box,” Aydın said. 

56 MHP members resign 

Meanwhile, 56 names from the MHP’s mayoralty in the western province Afyonkarahisar have resigned, following the resignation of Dinar District Mayor Saffet Acar on Aug. 21. 

Acar had been referred to a disciplinary committee by the MHP’s provincial head for dismissal over acting against the party hierarchy and party policies in early August.

Announcing his resignation before the convening of the disciplinary committee, Acar was followed by 10 members of the municipal council, 13 members of the board, a member of provincial assembly and 32 former board members. 

“We have raised the potential votes of the MHP from 900 to 10,000. If there is a local election now, we will win again,” Acar said during his announcement.