First reaction from AKP to Constitutional Court’s ruling on detained journalists
AKP Deputy General Chair Hayati Yazıcı reacted to the Constitutional Court’s ruling on the detained journalists.
AKP Deputy General Chair Hayati Yazıcı said at a press conference held at party headquarters in reply to a question about the journalists’ Constitutional Court decision, “I wish to underline that the Constitutional Court, in exercising this power vested in it to further the development of the rule of law, must exercise it in an exceptionally sensitive, meticulous and careful way. This means that one does not form the opinion that action is being taken with particular care in these areas in that it can act differently from the court that passed the basic decision.”
AKP Deputy General Chair with Responsibility for Political and Legal Affairs, Hayati Yazıcı, gave information at a press conference held at party headquarters about the work being conducted on harmonisation regulations with reference to the presidential system of governance. Yazıcı, stating that the most important political event of last year was the amendment made to the constitution, said that two aspects of this had importance and pointed to the importance of the way it was done and the content. Yazıcı, stressing that he wished to impart his views on the way it would be done, stated that a debate on the system and debate over a mooted presidency and the parliamentary model of governance had occupied the agenda in Turkey for many years. Yazıcı, indicating that the AK Party lacked the necessary quorum to amend the constitution and bring the presidential model to life, recalled the comments made by MHP General Chair Devlet Bahçeli following the vile 15 July coup attempt, “Support will be given in the matter of constitutional change.” Yazıcı, explaining that constitutional change returned to the agenda following this, stated that this work is being carried out through panels created by the MHP and AKP.
Yazıcı, pointing out that this amendment essentially marked the beginning of the making of very fundamental changes to Turkey’s political life and legal structure, commented, “This is a process of political and legal reform. Consequently, what is called for at this stage is to draft harmonisation laws in accordance with the amended constitution and ensure this functionality when the system becomes functional. We have put in very hard work in this regard, although this has not come greatly to the public’s attention. What have these amendments brought as far as the presidential system of governance is concerned? For one thing, an end will be put to the exercising of sovereignty with recourse to the intermediation of various institutions and entities in the constitution. Sovereignty will continue to be exercised by the people in an indivisible, indispensable and non-transferable manner.”
Yazıcı, explaining that in the new system these regulations will be approached from a libertarian viewpoint over fundamental rights and freedoms, stated that, with regard to this, five commissions had been created in the party to draw up the necessary amendments with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime-Minister Binali Yıldırım's approval.
“Each commission will consist of seven members”
Yazıcı, stating that the first commission was the “Structuring the Executive Commission”, said, “In its overall outlines, it is harmonising the presidential and prime-ministerial organisations with the new system and structuring the ministries. Formulation will be made as to the kind of structure that will be conducive to more effective functioning. Our Deputy General Chair Cevdet Yılmaz will act as chairman of this commission. Each commission will consist of seven members.”
Yazıcı, stating that the second commission was the “Staff Regime Commission”, said, “Do not look at this commission’s name and imagine that it is going to restructure the staff regime from top to bottom. Our citizens have vested rights and this commission only relates to the top civil service: general directorial and ministerial posts. It will work on regulations that keep step with the pace. Erzurum MP and member of our Central Decision and Executive Committee Efkan Ala will act as chairman of this commission.”
Yazıcı, explaining that the third commission was the “Political Parties and Electoral Legislation Adaption Commission”, said, “This commission is the commission for revising electoral legislation in view of the new system. This is the commission that started work earliest. This commission has advanced quite a long way with its work. Before long, the Ministry of Justice will in particular bring the portions having to do with local elections before parliament. By the end of March, the amendments in this area will have passed through parliament. Our Deputy General Chair Ahmet Sorgun will act as chairman of this commission.”
Yazıcı, saying that the fourth commission was the “Local Authorities Commission”, indicated, “The commission will deal with municipalities, special provincial administrations and headships and will conduct work so as to formulate the needed legislation. Our Deputy General Chair Erol Kaya will act as chairman of this commission.”
Yazıcı, noting that the fifth commission was the “Parliamentary Standing Orders Commission”, stated that its work was ongoing and AKP Deputy General Chair Mustafa Elitaş would act as chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Orders Commission.
Yazıcı, explaining that the amendments being made were open to all political parties, noted that work was being taken forward on the commissions with a very sharing approach in these areas. Yazıcı, explaining that it was not correct to pass on scraps of news about regulations that are made in alternative form or singly in any particular area, said that the correct information would be imparted through the press.
The AKP’s formula for alliance with the MHP
Yazıcı fielded journalists’ questions following his explanations. In response to a question about the AKP’s alliance formula as to what it basically boiled down to, Yazıcı commented, “There were talks two days ago between his excellency our General Chair and Mr Bahçeli. The MHP, laying stress on the project which we have commenced together, for sure made our stance known to the public by making reference to the Yenikapı spirit. A commission will be created that will cover alliances and similar matters and formulate them. This commission will come into being such that there will be three AK Party and three MHP people. It has been stated that, in the AK Party, his excellency our President and General Chair, and the MHP General Chair will nominate the commission members. They will be nominated and work will commence. Will this work proceed alongside these commissions? It is most likely that this will be the case or we may conduct work together in these areas. When this commission comes into being and starts work, it will become apparent what kind of formulation there will be. The area of alliance is an area in need of regulation and we will regulate this area. How we will formulate this will become apparent after that commission work. I spoke of a right with reference to voters’ rights. Consideration may be given to whether a formulation is preferable that facilitates alliances without making voting difficult.”
Claims of MHP cabinet participation
To a question about claims that certain figures from the MHP would be included in the cabinet and whether any negotiation had been made in this regard, Yazıcı replied, “No such negotiation has come into play. Had it done so, our General Chair and President would have given intimation. Change of government is not on our agenda, either.”
Constitutional Court’s journalists ruling
With a journalist asking about the ruling passed by the Constitutional Court on Mehmet Altan and Şahin Alpay, Yazıcı said, “It is most disturbing for procedures to be conducted that will give rise to dispute among courts. We should not bring courts into dispute. It is the courts that must display far more sensitivity in this regard. This means that one does not form the opinion that action is being taken with particular care in these areas in that different assertions can be entered into in the court. We are disturbed about this. God willing this will not create a problem because of this.”
Bahçeli's “treasury assistance” comment
Yazıcı, reminded of the comments Bahçeli made about treasury assistance with reference to the alliance, Yazıcı remarked, “I consider it to be most correct for political parties to make alliances. This, as is stated in this alliance that was initiated between the AK Party and the MHP, is a “national agreement alliance.” If everyone moves towards it, it will encapsulate everyone. It is not an area charted within narrow confines. It encompasses the whole of Turkey. This means the joint march of parties whose programmes are different in various areas in these alliances. This joint march is in Turkey’s interest. While engaging in business that is in Turkey’s interest, political parties must not be deprived of what they need to conduct business in other areas independently and in line with their own programmes. I say, ‘I am making an alliance and in making this alliance I abandon certain positions mindful of Turkey’s interests and say, “I will not be a candidate or field a candidate”.’ But, when you do this, you are deprived of treasury assistance and this is to apply a sanction and is a problem These areas must be formulated within the alliance formulation taking account of whatever justice and the law dictates. We will make this formulation.”
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