Transfer of 15 CHP deputies ‘touchstone,’ but İYİ Party returned favor: Akşener
İYİ (Good) Party leader Meral Akşener has expressed that the 2018 incident in which 15 deputies of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) resigned to secure the position of her party in the elections was a “touchstone” move but that her party had returned the favor in 2019 elections.
Speaking to broadcaster HaberTürk on Sept. 27, Akşener said that her party returned this favor by supporting CHP candidates in 2019 local elections.
“I will be grateful to Mr. [CHP leader Kemal] Kılıçdaroğlu until I die. This is something else. The famous ‘15 deputies’ issue is a very important touchstone for Türkiye’s future. Everyone should be proud of this,” Akşener said.
But, her party already responded this gesture in 2019 polls, she added.
“We don’t owe to Mr. Kılıçdaroğlu. If there was a debt, we paid it on March 31. We even became creditors,” she stated.
Akşener also said the İYİ Party only has positions of two directors and two deputy directors in the Istanbul Municipality, which is governed by CHP candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu.
Akşener said that her party will welcome a possible candidate from the CHP, reiterating her will to run for prime minister if the opposition coalition wins in the next elections.
In 2018, 15 CHP lawmakers temporarily joined the İYİ Party in a bid to allow it to form a 20-deputy party group in parliament, constitutionally gaining the right to enter elections.
The CHP lawmakers resigned from the CHP to ensure the İYİ Party’s participation in snap elections. After they ran in the June 24 elections, the deputes later returned to the CHP as the İYİ Party’s participation was secured.
In the local elections in 2019, the İYİ Party officially endorsed the CHP’s candidates in two metropolitan municipalities in Istanbul and Ankara, as part of their “Nation’s Alliance.”