CHP spokesperson says Constitution talks should not include system switch

Republican Peopleand’s Party (CHP) spokesperson Haluk Koandc has said his party would not support the inclusion of a possible switch in the system of governance andndash from a parliamentary to a presidential or semi-presidential system — during future talks to write a new Constitution for the country.
In a news conference at party headquarters on Tuesday while top administrators were holding a Central Executive Board (MYK) meeting, Koandc said, andquotWe are of the belief that either implicitly or explicitly, either directly or indirectly, discussion of a switch to either a presidential or a semi-presidential system should not be part of talks on a [new] Constitution.andquot
Ever since the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) won a landslide victory in the Nov. 1 snap election, its party officials have begun to bring the issue of a switch to a presidential system to the national agenda. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is known for being a long-time supporter of such a change and has made it no secret that he wants to become the first president to lead the country under a presidential system.
Opposition parties are opposed to such a change, fearing it would lead to the accumulation of too much power in the presidency without the necessary checks and balances, hence dragging the country into authoritarianism.
At the news conference Koandc also talked about the need to replace Turkeyand’s current coup-era Constitution with a new one that is democratic, pro-freedoms, civilian and free of any kind of tutelage.
andquotAs citizens of the Turkish Republic, there is a need for everyone in this country to share a common denominator by benefiting from equal rights and the law. There is a need for a Constitution that makes the judiciary independent, emphasizes the supremacy of law and structures the judicial institutions accordingly. There is a need for freedom of the press, which is curbed and handcuffed today, to be taken under guaranty within a constitutional framework,andquot said Koandc.
Turkey is gradually becoming a very difficult place for journalists to perform their jobs as many of them are prosecuted for expressing views that are critical of the government. Even posting a critical message on social media is being used as a reason to launch cases against journalists and give them jail sentences.

SOURCE: TODAY’S ZAMAN

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