Turkey has been locked into debates over a total Constitution change. As the governing Justice and Development Party, or AKP, had no chance to go for the total revision, AKP officials launched studies for "partial" changes.
Toptan: founding council can be formed for constitutional change
Making it difficult to close political parties and establishing the right for individuals to apply to Parliament, were included in a package presented to PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
The opposition doesn’t entertain the idea. Then, what will happen in this case? I traveled with Parliament Speaker Köksal Toptan on the Bandırma ship from Istanbul to Samsun and talked about the constitutional changes in detail.
Toptan believes Turkey needs a "civilian constitution." He said a founding council could be formed to conduct the relevant research. Since he cannot have support for that, Toptan added, Parliament is far away from this target today. According to him, CHP leader Deniz Baykal, who implied support for a founding council, does "nothing" in this direction. What is Toptan thinking about limited constitutional changes?
He says if any offer is made by any parties Ğ emphasizing, even if it comes from the DTP Ğhe could evaluate this. "I will take this offer and visit other political parties. And I can say, ’Such and such party suggested this constitutional change, what do you say? Let’s set up a commission of conciliation.’ I can start the process, but it is impossible for me to lead political parties." Upon being reminded that the AKP is working on constitutional change, but the CHP and MHP are reacting against it, Toptan said, "Let’s not lose our hope at all," as a way to send a message to the opposition parties. The parliament speaker stressed that a change is a must for the president’s and Parliament’s terms of office, adding he would visit party leaders for a Parliament bylaw offer.
Veteran politicians uniting in center
President-elect of the Democrat Party, or DP, Hüsamettin Cindoruk, despite his age, has taken the seat for a mission. A political guru, Cindoruk will bring parties to the center until the next local polls Ğ two years from now Ğ in order to establish an alternative to the AKP. For this, Cindoruk will first merge with the Motherland Party, or ANAP, which former DP leader Mehmet Ağar failed to do with ANAP’s former leader Erkan Mumcu.
New ANAP leader Salih Uzun is warm toward this project. A unification commission is on the way. The technical details will be discussed in this commission, which will work to unify the two parties. If there is a strong party in the center, this project shouldn’t be regarded as a project being conducted by only Cindoruk and Uzun. Two veteran politicians are behind this new formation: ninth President Süleyman Demirel and former PM Mesut Yılmaz. We’ll see if the experienced names of the center-right will be able to set up an alternative to the AKP.
Even Toptan uses jammer
Doubts about being phone-tapped are being revealed one after the other. It’s been revealed that after former Chief of General Staff retired Gen. Yaşar Büyükanıt, Toptan is using a special device to prevent tapping. Let’s hear what Toptan says: "I heard that someone in Denizli was making this device. If you place this inside the phone, no signal is being transferred out. I did so. But it ran out of battery, and I threw it away. It’s been 15-20 days. This is not because I am concerned. But let’s see what happens. It really prevents signals out." I think, even at the top of the state, almost everyone thinks they are being tapped.