Election safety compromised

I spent the weekend in Brussels, Rotterdam and Amsterdam where I chatted with members of the Turkish community. I heard their common concerns over the elections in Turkey. Almost all of them believe that their votes will be altered when they are packed up for shipment to Turkey.
Because of this concern, many of them have given up on casting votes at all. They are widely concerned about the integrity of the election. This concern works in the favor of the government because it helps the AK Party secure an aantage. The votes of Turks who live in Turkey have tended to determine the election results. For this reason, Prime Minister Davutoilu and President Erdogan held political rallies in Europe. It is observed that the AK Party, highly organized for the elections, secures a visible aantage in the elections because of the concerns of the voters and their reluctance to cast their votes.
This is not the case in Europe alone the same concern prevails in Turkey. Most voters believe that the government will commit election fraud to win the election. This belief leads opposition voters and supporters to become reluctant to visit the polls. This sense of despair is the product of the illegal and arbitrary practices of the government. The people contend that in a country where the judges and prosecutors are placed under arrest, they cannot possibly expect impartiality from the election bodies. This raises serious concerns over the reliability of the elections.
Despair is the final stage before the reign of fear in a dictatorship. When you start to believe that there is no way you can deal with intimidation and fear, dictatorship establishes itself firmly. Before discussing the election safety issue, we need to focus on the sentiment of political weakness and despair that took society hostage.
The primary reason is that Erdogan, violating his oath of impartiality, has been conducting an election campaign. Erdogan relies on a fairly strong discourse by which he insults and criticizes the opposition. As a president, he uses state resources and exploits the aantage of serving as president. Through this, he gives the impression that he is a strong leader who is able to do anything without having to comply with the established rules.
The arrests of judges and prosecutors before the election are seen as the arbitrary decisions of Erdogan. Before court decisions, Erdogan makes remarks that could be taken as instructions to the judges. And then his statements are followed by arrests. The Higher Election Board, responsible for ensuring a fair and just election, favors Erdogan in its decision. The Board dismissed demand by Peopleand’s Democratic Party (HDP)hair Demirtai for the ban of Erdoganand’s election rallies because they violated the constitutionally mandated impartiality of the president. This decision alone raises concerns over the election safety.
Simultaneous power outages in the local elections on March 30 raised a general concern at the time. AK Party figures were local administrators where power outages were experienced. The ruling party argued that a cat entering power station caused the outage but this did not satisfy people. Now and”catand” is used as a reference to election fraud by the AK Party. Now people also believe that this cat will take action in this election as well.
The AK Party uses the state sources in the elections to organize its campaigns. There are a number of reported election and polling frauds including delivery of pre-sealed voting notes to the voters and the doling out of bribe money. Speculation of election fraud currently constitutes the most important dimension of the ongoing debates regarding the election. Some of fraud is impossible to commit but the debate alone poses a serious threat to the election.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman