Referendum will be ‘insurance of the Republic,’ energy minister claims

Referendum will be ‘insurance of the Republic,’ energy minister claims

Hande Fırat - ANKARA
Referendum will be ‘insurance of the Republic,’ energy minister claims

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The referendum on constitutional amendments ushering in an executive presidential system will “ensure the existence of the republic,” Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak has claimed, while voicing concern about further terror attacks ahead of the referendum.

“This is the most important choice that will mark the Republic as the lasting value of these lands and these people forever. This referendum will be the insurance of the Republic,” Albayrak told reporters on Feb. 12.
“This referendum is a crucial choice to eliminate any kind of anti-democratic interventions against the will of the people at different levels such as coups, crises, instability or coalitions,” he added. 

‘Precaution needed until the referendum’

Albayrak also expressed concern that Turkey could experience “unwanted issues” before the referendum.

“We have to be prepared for all kinds of things before the referendum,” he said.

“We lived the July 15 [2016 coup attempt]. And I think that we as a society should correctly read what this referendum really means. In Turkey the old methods, old operations, and message-giving plans no longer hold water. This society does not forgive those who want to attempt such things from inside or outside,” Albayrak added.

“We are paying the price in the struggle against terrorism and economic attacks. But we are patient and we are together strongly,” he said.

‘Historic choice’

Praising the constitutional amendment as eliminating a “multi-headed executive” of legislative and executive branches, Albayrak claimed that the new system will create “stability” because there will not be any “political risks like early elections or coalitions.”

He also said the amendment paves the way for “judicial control” of the president, suggesting that the current constitution allows such control only for “treason.”

“I think it is a very critical vote. I am optimistic at this point,” he said.

“We have to get in touch with our people and explain the system in a clear fashion, to raise awareness. We have to reach every individual who is confused. We need to explain how critical the process is in Turkey’s journey with an intensive campaign,” Albayrak added.

“If we are talking about a strong Turkey in the 21st century, we need to explain that this is a very historic election,” he said.