Top Turkish bosses seek fair judiciary system with charter

Top Turkish bosses seek fair judiciary system with charter

ISTANBUL / ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Top Turkish bosses seek fair judiciary system with charter

TÜSİAD’s Yılmaz is reportedly awaiting an appointment from the PM. DHA photo

The Turkish Industry and Business Organization (TÜSİAD), a leading business organization in the country, has called on the government to consider three main principles for the country’s new charter.

The group’s demands, which were listed in a statement yesterday, include judicial freedoms, universal rights and freedoms and a change in the democratic representation system, although the organization did not specifically mention the current election threshold of 10 percent in general elections.

The list came at a time when the ties between the group and the government are being discussed amid a media report questioning whether Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is reluctant about giving an appointment to newly elected TÜSİAD Chairman Muharrem Yılmaz.

“As TÜSİAD, we want the new Constitution to be prepared based on three basic principles,” the statement read.

“We have to create a Constitution that will guarantee universal rights and freedoms, that totally fulfills the principle of checks and balances, that prioritizes judicial independence and that provides justice in representation,” it said.

“If Turkey finalizes this process with a charter that is prepared by conciliation and a broad consensus as desired, and which is based on these three principles, then we can be more hopeful about the future of the country,” it said.

The report also praised the performance of the Turkish economy despite the ongoing economic crisis in the world.

Noting that the country’s 2.2 percent growth in 2012 was slightly below expectations, TÜSİAD said it was hopeful for 4 percent growth this year.

“A strong economy is possible only with a strong democracy,” the statement said. “There lies a chance beyond Turkey in this regard,” it added, referring to efforts to form a new Constitution.

The TÜSİAD group met with President Abdullah Gül, Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay, Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan, Parliamentary Speaker Cemil Çiçek, Education Minister Nabi Avcı, Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli and Peace and Democracy Party co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş between April 10 and 12, a first since its new board took seat two months ago.

Columnist asks about PM meeting

Meanwhile, daily Hürriyet columnist Erdal Sağlam wrote yesterday that TÜSİAD’s new board members, who were “expected to be more moderate with the government,” met with everyone but could not receive an appointment with Erdoğan.

Noting that the mission visited Ankara twice last week for the aforementioned talks, Sağlam said it could not received its desired appointment with the premier.

Newly elected TÜSİAD boards traditionally demand appointments in Ankara one week after assuming their positions, Sağlam said. “I think the new board formed at the general assembly on Jan. 17 picked the same way. They should be asking for appointments from Ankara, mainly the prime minister starting from late January at the latest. Thus we can say that the new TÜSİAD board could not get the appointment for more than two months. We do not know about the reason for that, but certainly this is not normal.”

Members were surprised that Yılmaz was unable to schedule a meeting after replacing Ümit Boyner, a figure who had often clashed with the government from time to time, Sağlam quoted members as saying, without giving specific names.

Boyner, who had quarrels with some Cabinet ministers, the fiercest being with Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç, had harshly criticized politicians in a late December interview for sustaining a discriminatory stance against women in their statements about her.

“They have done this to all women. … Playing to the audience, but the things they talk about behind my back require courage to tell me in person,” she said during an appearance on domestic broadcaster Skytürk.