Turkish opposition slams government during budget talks
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu speaks in Parliament about the 2015 budget, as Cabinet members, including Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and Deputy PM Ali Babacan, look on. AA PhotoOpposition parties have criticized the government over its targets during budget talks in Parliament, asking it to reveal spending details.
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has called on the government to explain where taxpayers’ money is going and how the budget is being used.
Speaking to Parliament on Dec. 10, Kilıçdaroğlu questioned whether the government was preparing the budget according to the law, and asked if the budget had ever been declared within the time limit since 2006.
“Should mid-term programs not be released in the first week of September? This year's has still not been released yet,” the CHP leader said, calling on the government to explain why.
Kılıçdaroğlu also drew attention to the government’s efforts to “escape” from giving the financial accounts of a number of ministers to the Court of Accounts.
“The Court of Accounts cannot perform its duty because some ministries have not submitted their accounts. I ask the prime minister: On what grounds are they permitted to not submit their accounts? I also ask the parliamentary speaker: Why do you not intervene?” he said.
The government continues to discuss "structural reforms" despite being in power for the last 12 years, Kılıçdaroğlu added.
“Who has been ruling this country for 12 years? What is the economic policy? What does your budget suggest? You have been repeating the same story that Turkey is growing. But the annual average growth rate between 1960 and 2003 was 5.1 percent - despite coups, oil crises and Turkey’s intervention in Cyprus. The same rate between 2003 and now, under your rule, is 4.7 percent,” he said.
The unemployment rate is currently higher than 10 percent, which causes social problems such as a rise in the divorce rate and the use of drugs, Kılıçdaroğlu stressed.
He also claimed that Turkey has surpassed Norway to become the country with the most expensive gas at $2.1 per liter. “I want to ask the prime minister: On what grounds is gas so expensive in Turkey? Are we richer than Norway?” he asked.
Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) deputy Hasip Kaplan also criticized the government over the huge cost of the controversial new presidential palace in Ankara.