Ruling AKP deputy buys apartment built for low-income people in eastern Turkish province
Ferit Demir TUNCELİ / Doğan News Agency
DHA PhotoA deputy of Turkey’s ruling party is among the high-income individuals who have bought a flat constructed for low-income families in the eastern province of Tunceli.
Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Istanbul deputy Mustafa Ataş, former Çemişgezek Mayor Metin Levent Yıldız, who is also a member of the AKP, and the Çemişgezek Business Association Head Hıdır Özefe are among those who have bought flats built to enable people living in poverty to own a house.
Ataş said they had applied to the state-run housing agency (TOKİ) for the construction of these houses, as there was a need for housing in the regio. He claimed that he bought a flat there to encourage other people to buy.
“I bought a flat for encouragement and I encouraged my friends to buy one too. I bought a house as a person from the region. There are no regulations stating that a deputy cannot buy a flat from TOKİ. I did not encroach or breach anyone’s rights. I am using my legal right as a citizen. I am not stealing,” said Ataş.
TOKİ started the project in 2009 in Tunceli’s Çemişgezek district to enable families with a maximum monthly income of 2,600 Turkish Liras to own houses. Applications were made to the Çemişgezek Municipality and applicants needed to supply evidence that their income did exceed the upper limit of 2,600 liras.
It is not clear how Ataş, Yıldız, and Özefe got around this regulation, but they have paid the 6,000 lira advance payment and will pay the rest of the total, 69,100 liras, over the next 15 years.