Şahin’s remarks spark reaction in opposition

Şahin’s remarks spark reaction in opposition

ANKARA - In their parliamentary motions, CHP and MHP deputies say Şahin’s remarks were not democratic and ethic. They say pressure from the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, has turned into a tradition in the country and the voters who support the opposition were pressures to support the AKP, as evidenced by Şahin’s comments

Opposition parties filed parliamentary motions against the justice minister for his remarks suggesting that non-ruling party municipalities cannot make progress in government.   

The municipalities that conflict with the government have been unable to pass their projects in Ankara and people’s problems could be solved if the local administrations that support the central government came to the power, Justice Minister Mehmet Ali Şahin said in Antalya on Sunday.

Şahin said the problems in Antalya, known as the fortress of the main opposition Republican People’s Party, or CHP, cannot be solved without financial support from the central government and local sources.

Şahin’s remarks drew harsh criticism from the opposition parties yesterday with opposition deputies from the CHP and the Nationalist Movement Party, or MHP, taking the issue to Parliament with separate motions.

In his parliamentary motion, MHP Mersin deputy Mehmet Şandır said Şahin threatened the public ahead of the local elections. Şandır asked Şahin whether he found his statement politically ethical and if he thought it was in line with the election laws.

Remarks discriminatory

CHP Ordu deputy Rahmi Güner, in his parliamentary motion, asked Şahin whether he wanted to prevent Antalya voters from using their free will while voting in the local elections. Güner said his remarks harmed the confidence in Şahin’s position as the justice minister, urging him to resign to restore the public’s views on the issue.

In their parliamentary motions, CHP Antalya and Adıyaman deputies Hüsnü Çöllü and Şevket Köse asked Şahin which municipalities were in conflict with the government and which projects were baffled by the central government. They asked whether his statements represented his individual thoughts or if they could be considered government policy.

CHP İzmir deputy Ahmet Ersin said in a written statement yesterday that Şahin openly threatened the electorates who plan to vote for opposition parties. He said the pressure by the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, has turned into a tradition in the country and the electorates who vote for the opposition were forced to support the AKP.

Erdoğan challenges opposition

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan promised yesterday to quit office if he failed to implement any formula created by opposition parties in the fight against unemployment.

"I promise from here: My Baykal and Mr. Bahçeli, no need to call on the rest: I say this: If you have a cure against unemployment do declare it. I am ready to quit politics if I don’t implement it," Erdoğan said in Mardin while addressing his electorate. Opposition leaders Deniz Baykal andDevlet Bahçeli, criticized Erdoğan of underestimating the economic crisis and not doing enough to curb unemployment. The number of unemployed has increased to three million in recent months.

"Is unemployment (a product) of the AKP? When we came to the power, the percentage of the unemployed was 10.7. Now it has increased 2 or 3 percent as a result of the crisis stemming from the United States," he stated. Erdoğan hit back at the opposition for trying to gain political advantage by exploiting unemployment.
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