Due to a “blemish” in March’s local elections in Istanbul, Turkey’s metropolis of 16 million people, the public wants a do-over election, said Turkey’s president on Saturday.
“My citizens tell me this; My president, this election should be done again,” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in Istanbul, at the opening ceremony of a new headquarters for the Independent Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (MUSIAD).
Correcting the corruption in the elections would vindicate the Supreme Election Council (YSK) and relieve the hearts of the Turkish people, he added.
“All our efforts are towards giving the value of the nation’s vote back to the nation,” said Erdogan, also leader of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party, adding that they do not want the Istanbul polls lost to irregularities and illegalities.
Millions of voters cast their votes nationwide in the March 31 local elections to choose Turkey’s mayors, city council members, and other officials for the next five years.
Ekrem Imamoglu of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) last month officially took office as Istanbul mayor. However, his election still faces legal challenges from the AK Party.
Erdogan has rebuffed rumors that the AK Party had given up hope on the Istanbul results, stating that the party will continue its legal struggle.
MUSIAD's role in the economy
Erdogan underlined that MUSIAD is prominent in setting Turkey's macroeconomic policies.
"MUSIAD plays a key role in attracting international investors to Turkey and showing opportunities in foreign countries to our exporters and investors," he stressed.
Saying that the Turkish economy got strong over the last 17 years due to government steps, Erdogan added that this rise will continue.
"Turkey reached $170 billion in exports from $36 billion 17 years ago," Erdogan said.
Abdurrahman Kaan, MUSIAD's head, said Turkey is a strong and active player in the global area.
MUSIAD supports Turkey with its members, sectoral expertise, and local and international operations, Kaan added.