Role for Turkish nation in deciding presidential system

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim says referendum will determine reforms as early as April

Role for Turkish nation in deciding presidential system

World Bulletin / News Desk

 As Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party seeks to introduce a presidential system of government, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on Friday said the nation would take the main role in constitutional reform.

Speaking ahead of a three-day consultation meeting with party members on changes to move Turkey away from a parliamentary system, Yildirim told journalists in Afyonkarahisar, western Turkey, that people would decide the course of change.

“What we want is for this question to be sorted out by the nation as the nation finds a solution to the issues which politicians failed to address,” he said. “We believe our citizens will decide the most reasonable and righteous decision if the bill passes parliament.”

The planned constitutional changes will be put to a referendum that Yildirim indicated would take place next April at the earliest.

Earlier this week he said the AK Party would submit a constitutional bill to parliament as soon as possible.

Constitutional change, in particular, the call for a presidential system, has been on the political agenda since Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the former prime minister and AK Party leader, was elected president in August 2014.

The election marked the first time a Turkish president, whose role is currently defined as being largely symbolic, was directly chosen by popular vote.

Changing to a presidential system is opposed by Turkey’s three other parliamentary parties, and the AK Party lacks the necessary number of lawmakers to make the change without a referendum.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 22 Ekim 2016, 16:25