Municipal elections in Turkey: Erdoğan strategy, the new party that “threats” him and CHP’s assets

Istanbul is Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s keen desire in , with the president betting on Murat Kurum for the victory of the ruling party, AKP, over the current mayor – and again candidate – Erem Imamoglu. In the municipal elections in Turkey, he did not appoint candidates for the current mayors of the regions, affected by the February 6, 2023 earthquake. On the contrary, he chose new faces for the cities of Kahramanmaras, Malatia, Adiyaman, Karabuk and Kilis. The deadly earthquake in the east of the country, but also that of -about- 7 Richter, predicted by the seismologists for Constantinople, led the Turkish president to choose Murat Kurum, for AKP’s candidate under the slogan “Constance again”. Murat Kurum served as Minister for Environment and Urbanization in 2018 – 2023 and is therefore credited with the programme of rapid reconstruction of the areas affected by the earthquakes of 6 February 2023. His experience in rebuilding urban areas and urban regeneration programs implemented in the previous period by the government is predicted to be the comparative advantage of the ruling AKP (Communist Justice and Development) for the armoring of Istanbul, against the great earthquake predicted by seismologists. Polls show derby between Kurum and Imamoglu, who have promised infrastructure projects to make buildings anti-seismic and reduce the city’s chronic traffic congestion. Erdoğan’s eventual triumph and the plan to change constitution Political analysts estimate that the… recovery of Istanbul and Ankara will strengthen Erdogan’s plan to promote a new constitution that could allow him to rule after 2028, when his current term expires. The current constitution limits two positions to the presidency. However, the “sultan” ran for a third term last year, citing a technical element, because the country switched to a presidential system in 2018 and its first term was held with the previous system. “Serdoğan and his allies do not currently have sufficient seats in parliament to establish a new constitution, but another electoral triumph may influence some conservative opposition MPs to change sides,” they stress political analysts. The new party that threatens to steal votes from AKP However, with great interest are expected the percentages that will record the new religious-conservative party, “New Welfare Party” (YRP). Addressing conservative and religious voters who have been disappointed by Erdogan’s handling of the economy, he is expected to… steal votes from AKP candidates. Women and young people chose CHP For his part, the new leader of the main opposition, Ozgiur Ozel, will have his first major test, in the municipal elections. Ozgiur Ozel was the “right hand” of the outgoing president, Kemal Kilicdaroglou, who alienated many by his decision to set aside the all-popular mayor of Smyrna, Tuds Soyer, and to lower another candidate for the stronghold of secular Turkey, a man he considers more “his own”, Jemil Tugai. In addition, in Smyrna, out of 30 candidates for local mayors, nine are women, while 11 are under 40.