AKP mayor refuses to employ coalition partner

Ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) Gebze Mayor in the north-western industrial province of Kocaeli, Zinnur Büyükgöz said he cannot employ his party’s coalition partner Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) members in the municipality, reported Turkish daily Yeniçağ.

MHP’s Kocaeli Chapter Chairperson Aydın Ünlü had said that his organisation, as the only province where the Cumhur (“Nation”) Alliance between the AKP and MHP did not negotiate employment quotas, deserves public servant positions in the municipality.

As a sign of further fracture between the two partners of the alliance, Mayor Büyükgöz announced that Ünlü’s demand will not be met. Büyükgöz said, “Employment of MHP members in the Gebze Municipality is not technically possible.”

MHP had won 11 percent of the vote in the previous local elections of 2014, and the AKP won the mayor’s seat by a comfortable 20 percent difference in the 2019 elections.