Turkish President Erdoğan surprised Turkish politicians Friday when he called Turkish to early elections on November 01 after the interim Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and the head of the AKP party failed to form a coalition.
“The date announced [for an early general election] at the moment is Nov. 1. Turkey will, God willing, go through what I like to call a repeat election on Nov. 1,” Erdoğan told reporters on Friday.
Erdogan’s decision came as Davutoglu, head of the majority party AKP and interim Prime Minister, failed to form a coalition with the opposition after all parties in the June elections missed to notch a margin large enough to form a single-party government.
Erdogan per the constitution entrusted Davutoglu with forming a coalition government at the latest by August 23.
Erdogan’s decision irked the main opposition party, the Republican People’s Party (CHP,) which claimed that the President, according to democratic usage, should give their leader the mandate to form the government as the leading party failed to attain the mission assigned to it.
CHP condemned Erdogan’s decision calling it a “coup” and denial of the nation’s will.
“We invite the president to immediately give the mandate to the CHP,” Özgür Özel, the CHP parliamentary group deputy chairman told reporters.
“We have difficulty understanding the president’s attitude that blatantly does away with the democratic practices since he himself rose thanks to democracy,” Özel added.
Reports say Erdogan refused to assign Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to form a coalition government after the CHP allegedly refused to meet Erdogan at the presidential palace in Ankara’s Beştepe neighbourhood.
Erdogan also once indicated that he will not assign the CHP leader to form a cabinet.
“Why should I call to Beştepe the one who does not recognize Beştepe [as legitimate]?” Erdogan once said?
Erdogan repeatedly said that giving the mandate to Kılıçdaroğlu would be a waste of time and that he would call for snap election after consulting one more time with the speaker of the Parliament.
Erdogan’s November 01 proposed date is in contradiction with plans of the Supreme Election Board (YSK).
Sadi Güven, head of YSK rejected comments saying that his Board approved Nov 01 date. He argued that Nov 01 was out of question and the election could be scheduled on Nov. 8 or Oct. 25.