Parliament to discuss graft commission resolution on May 5

ISTANBUL (CIHAN)- Justice and Development Party’s (AK Party) parliamentary group deputy chairman Nurettin Canikli has said a resolution for the establishment of a commission to examine allegations of misconduct and graft leveled at four former Cabinet ministers will be reviewed by Parliament on Monday, May 5.

anikli said the resolution submitted by his party as well as another resolution presented by the Republican People’s Party (CHP) will be taken up on May 5. He also said all the allegations leveled at the four former ministers will be investigated. “In the new resolution, we have included all of the acts allegedly committed by four of our former ministers in line with the corresponding articles in the Turkish Penal Code [TCK].” The AK Party had earlier been criticized for leaving out most of the allegations directed against the four men, but the party later submitted a new resolution in which it had included all of the accusations faced by the former ministers. “We believe these accusations should be thoroughly investigated,” Canikli said.

The AK Party submitted its new, revised resolution to the Parliament Speaker’s Office on Thursday.

The resolution also included the preliminary statement of the summary of proceedings concerning the four former ministers that was earlier sent to Parliament by the prosecutor’s office conducting the corruption probe. The preliminary statement reads: “Suspect Reza Zarrab — against whom the Smuggling and Narcotics Crimes Bureau of the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office directed charges, including forming and managing a crime syndicate, engaging in the forgery of official documents, smuggling, and receiving and giving bribes — and certain person who are claimed to have links with those charges directed at Zarrab, were detained on Dec. 17, 2013. The investigation against those persons is still ongoing. Allegations that Mersin deputy Mehmet Zafer ÇaIlayan, who was the economy minister, Mardin deputy Muammer Guler, who was the interior minister, and Istanbul deputy Egemen BaIII, who was the EU affairs minister, had illegal links with Reza Zarrab while they were at their ministry posts have come to the public agenda since Dec. 17.”

The summary of proceedings that was prepared by the prosecutor’s office against former Environment and Urban Planning Minister ErdoIan Bayraktar was handled separately from the motions concerning the three other ministers.

All four ministers are accused of having acquired material benefit from Zarrab in return for a number of favors they did for him.

The summaries of proceedings involving Guler, ÇaIlayan, BaIII and Bayraktar reached Parliament in February, but the government initially prevented Parliament from debating their content due to the March local elections that were then approaching. The four former ministers who were implicated left their posts soon after the major graft operation was revealed on Dec. 17, 2013. They have denied any involvement in wrongdoing. (CihanToday’s Zaman)