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The High Advisory Board Meeting of the Turkish Industry and Business Association (TÜSİAD) started in İstanbul yesterday (May 15).
Referring to the March 31 Local Elections in his opening speech, TÜSİAD High Advisory Board Chair Tuncay Özilhan said, “Election marathons consuming our whole energy for years have worn us all out” and added:
“In fact, we have to devote not only the next three months, but the next 30 years to speaking, to resolving the underlying problems.
“The March 31 elections, whose conclusion has lasted unusually long, has become an important test of democracy for our country.
“In these elections, the government, the opposition and all state institutions, especially the Supreme Election Council (YSK), were faced with a big test. The history will write who got what grade in this test.
‘Tension will continue with annulment of elections’
“The transition from the Parliamentary system to the Presidential one does not seem to be completed yet. The institutional structure of the Presidential system could not be established. Apparently, the political tension will continue with the annulment of İstanbul elections.”
‘We want the will of the voters to be respected’
Underlining that raising objections to the election results is the most natural right of political parties and they respect this freedom of right-seeking as the TÜSİAD, Özilhan continued as follows:
“However, we also want that the will of the voters be respected. An election under equal terms and the will of the voters are, without question, the most essential feature of democracies.
“The nature of the objections to the elections have left question marks on the minds of everyone regarding the proper implementation of electoral laws.
“It is the responsibility of the administration to ensure that the flaws in the electoral law and its implementation are eliminated before the elections, not after them.
“It is also what will remove any dubious points regarding the elections. Let’s not forget it! There will be nothing without the rule of law and democracy.
“There will be no economy or anything else. And the principles of democracy are universal.
‘If democracy operates, economy will perform better’
“We rank 121st in inflation and 111th in efficiency of labor market.
“We rank 111th in independence of judiciary, 109th in right-seeking at the judiciary against public regulations and 129th in freedom of press.
“That is why, we say that the legal and judicial system should be restored so that economy can recover.
“In other words, if it is ensured that democracy operates, rule of law prevails and an education reform paving the way for critical thinking is introduced, our economy will also perform better.” (AÖ/SD)