Turkish citizens in hurry to be registered as voters ahead of June 24 early elections
People are standing in long queues outside civil registry offices across the country to be registered as voters for the upcoming June 24 presidential and parliamentary elections. People are standing in long queues outside civil registry offices across the country to be registered as voters for the upcoming June 24 presidential and parliamentary elections.
The voter lists have already been posted at neighborhood councils for people to check if their names are on the list as eligible voters.
The deadline to notify authorities of change of address is May 12.
Many people have rushed to civil registry offices across Turkey to report change of address in order to be able to cast their votes in the upcoming elections.
Before the snap poll was called, civil registry offices, which are in charge of handling change of address requests, were processing around 500 applications per day. But this figure has more than doubled to 1,100 in recent days.
The Interior Ministry announced in a post on Twitter on May 4 that civil registry offices would be open to help people on May 12, a Saturday.
Civil registry offices were also open on the previous Saturday and Sunday, when they are normally closed for the weekend.
People have been standing in long lines even during lunch breaks with their utilities bills, which serve as proof of address. As the doors open after break, people fill the halls of registry offices.
“It is so crowded. People are like ants. I have never seen anything like this before,” one person said at a civil registry in the Mediterranean province of Antalya.
Another person said that people had problems making appointments and taking queue numbers.
“When I got here it was 8:00 in the morning and there were 300 people in the line. Now there are 20 people left but it is already evening,” said Hüseyin Acun, who came to the civil registry in Antalya to notify he changed his address.
[HH] Mobile application
Meanwhile, the Supreme Election Board (YSK) has launched a mobile application to help voters check their information.
The application, called “Voter Inquiry Mobile Application” provides voters with information regarding which ballot station people should go to cast their votes.
People will also be able to check information about voters who live in the same building as well as their relatives.
The information on the application contains the same information as the voter lists posted at neighborhood councils.
High turnout rate
There are 57 million voters in Turkey. Around 1.6 million are first-time voters.
The voter turnout rate has always been high in Turkey.
The turnout was 85.46 in the April 2017 referendum. Some 51.3 percent of the Turkish voters said “yes” to the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) constitutional amendment package in a tight race to decide on whether to shift to an executive presidential system.
In the June 2016 and November 2016 parliamentary elections, the turnout rates were 83.3 percent and 87.6 percent, respectively.
Turkey will go to early parliamentary and presidential elections on June 24, a year-and-a-half ahead of schedule.