BuLENT – DavutoIlu’s misery

DavutoIlu’s misery2014 was a year fraught with hardships and even disasters for Turkey as regards the countryand#39s economy, foreign policy, political stability, social peace, security, legal guarantees and fundamental rights and freedoms. Unfortunately, there were serious regressions in all of these areas as well as considerable setbacks in Turkeyand#39s long-lasting issues.

We not only failed to settle these problems but even exacerbated them before leaving them as legacies to 2015.The sad thing is that those who are supposed to solve these problems are the major causes of the problems in the first place.

Let us take President Recep Tayyip ErdoIan, who has so far given in to the ambitions of establishing a full-fledged one-man dictatorship as an example. He scorns the very idea of being a president for the entire country as he believes the majoritarian hegemony which he secured in some way or other via heavy propaganda gives him legitimacy, and he is dragging the country to a fast-track disaster With his rhetoric rife with inconceivable delusions and paranoia as well as his actions and abortive attempts to overcome bureaucratic and social resistance points, he is swiftly turning Turkey into an unmanageable country that is being swallowed by a whirlpool of chaos and uncertainties.

At this stage, it would be nonsensical to expect anything of a president who practically abolished the Constitution, which defines the relationship between the state and the society as well as powers, duties and responsibilities of the state organs. Despite the fact that the Constitution clearly lists all the powers and authorities of the presidency and the president has extremely restricted powers and authorities concerning the executive, ErdoIan is not willing to let go of the reins of the state-oriented rentier economy, at the expense of undermining the constitutional order As ErdoIan refrains from sticking to the powers and authorities of the president as defined in the Constitution, we can hardly say that a democratic constitutional order is firmly in place in Turkey.

Now, we must assert openly and intrepidly that ErdoIan alone has long been the greatest-ever problem for Turkish democracy and rule of law. Even the story of how the controversial new presidential palace Ak Saray was built for his personal use by arbitrarily violating all the rules and laws of the public budget is enough to reveal the sad state of Turkey.

Indeed, the construction of the palace continued despite court orders to halt the construction and more than 35 serious legal actions have been brought so far to challenge its legality. Although it was originally planned as a prime ministerial building, it was re-designated as a presidential palace after ErdoIan was elected president.

All this is clear evidence of how ErdoIan uses public resources for arbitrary and personal purposes.On the other hand, ErdoIanand#39s insistence on making incessant and redundant remarks about the legislature, the judiciary and the executive as well as peopleand#39s private lives and his efforts to become a decisive factor in these areas constitute another dimension of the problem In which democratic country does a head of the state feel the need to make statements several times a day? Which president would deign to take aantage of even the most ordinary opening ceremony or a dealersand#39 meeting to make a public appearance and deliver a speech? If US President Barack Obama, or the British queen or French President Franois Hollande is slated to make a statement, the whole world is curious about their message.

But why should a man who is obsessed with making remarks five times a day inspire any respect or interest? Why would the leadership of a man who pokes his nose into every matter — including but not limited to when and how many times a woman should be pregnant and what people should eat and drink — be of any value to anyone?At this point, I should underline an important issue: Given the fact that all the institutions and rules of the system in Turkey — which can still be considered formally as a parliamentary democratic system — are being ruthlessly breached and that ErdoIan, as president, has become the main source of problems, doesnand#39t the democratic rule of law have any means or opportunity to protect and safeguard itself? Even though it was drafted in the wake of a coup dand#39andeacutetat and designed according to the despotic needs of the subversive General Kenan Evren, who later became president, the Constitution of 1982 is equipped with major safety mechanisms in this regard. We may scorn it as a coup constitution but the Constitution of 1982 gives the prime minister-led Cabinet responsibility for the countryand#39s administration, even though it grants certain symbolic powers and authorities to the president.

For instance, Article 105 of the Constitution reads: andquotAll presidential decrees except those which the president of the republic is empowered to enact by himself without the signatures of the prime minister and the minister concerned shall, in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and other laws, be signed by the prime minister and the ministers concerned. The prime minister and the ministers concerned shall be accountable for these decrees.

andquotDespite these clear provisions of the Constitution, how can a deviation come into being so that the president can establish three new units for the de facto administration of the country at his palace, which is nothing but a monument to ostentatiousness, and how can his special aisor have the audacity to issue instructions to Prime Minister Ahmet DavutoIlu? The answer to this question is very simple and is not addressed, of course, to ErdoIan, who is the source of the problem This scandal — which has the potential to push Turkey into a terrible disaster — stems from Prime Minister DavutoIluand#39s misery, the weakness of his willpower, and his impotence. Like any ambitious person who is prone to become a dictator, ErdoIan exhibits his potential to threaten democracy, the rule of law and social peace, but it is DavutoIluand#39s willful political impotence that turns it into a real problemDevelopments suggest that instead of asserting his own personality and identity, DavutoIlu chooses to be a minion who is nothing but a mere imitator of ErdoIan.

He sacrifices even the last remnants of his personality, dignity and willpower to ErdoIanand#39s unrestrained tyranny. Moreover, he reinforces his image as someone who is prone to, or ready to accept, ErdoIanand#39s tyranny.

Against this background, one can understand how a special aisor to ErdoIan can say, andquotIt is us who assigned DavutoIlu this positionandquot or andquotIt is us who equipped DavutoIlu with these powers and authorities.andquot In my opinion, this scandal results more from the misery of DavutoIluand#39s situation than from the audacity of that aisorWhen ErdoIan had announced that he would preside over the Cabinet meeting held on Jan.

5, this triggered a public debate and eventually, DavutoIlu and his aide rejected the speculation and asserted that no such meeting would take place on Jan. 5 What do you think happened eventually? ErdoIan made it public that he would preside over the Cabinet meeting on Jan.

19, and the prime minister failed to utter a single remark in protest. Moreover, the Turkish Industrialists and Businessmenand#39s Association (TuSIAD) took a big risk and declared that they saw Prime Minister DavutoIlu as their addressee, not President ErdoIan.

As expected, ErdoIanand#39s reaction was harsh as he announced he would never attend any activity organized by the TuSIAD. Then his minion rushed to declare that he would not attend any event held by this business club despite the fact that its trade volume accounts for 50 percent of Turkish economy.

This indicates that the prime ministerand#39s deplorable misery constitutes a major problem for Turkey, which is of equal intensity to ErdoIanand#39s audacious tyranny. Thus, the powers and authorities of the prime minister-led Cabinet can be transferred with legislation drafted by unknown actors to certain members of the government whose value is determined solely by their unconditional obedience to ErdoIan.

For instance, the andquotpower to declare state of emergencyandquot — which should belong to the prime minister-led Cabinet under the Constitution — is transferred to Interior Minister Efkan Ala, who is at ErdoIanand#39s beck and call. In the face of these developments, DavutoIlu does everything to stick to his office as prime minister despite the fact that his willpower is nullified and his personality is eroded.

But shutting his eyes knowingly or unknowingly to the pruning of his prime ministerial powers and authorities and the bypassing of his office, DavutoIlu is playing a crucial role in facilitating this despotic course of events and is becoming a major actor in this historic treachery. Be pre-warned.


SOURCE: Today’s Zaman