Istanbul municipal subsidiary chairs resign after rebuke from new mayor

The chairs of municipal subsidiary companies that work with the Istanbul municipality to provide services to citizens have resigned after Istanbul’s new mayor, the main opposition Republican People’s Party’s Ekrem İmamoğlu, threatened legal action against them, Turkish news site Oda Tv reported on Thursday.

The companies provide vital services including water and transport to the city, and are usually chaired by staff from the municipality. İmamoğlu threatened legal action after 10 individuals resigned from their municipal positions, but refused his demand that they resign from the subsidiary companies.

“We promised the people that we would give an account for everything. There are administrators who are resisting the authority granted to us by the people of Istanbul. The municipal subsidiaries mean two thirds of the municipal budget and 80 percent of the staff. We are not going to allow a handful of people to stand against the will of the nation,” İmamoğlu said on Twitter at the time.

İmamoğlu made international headlines on June 23 by ending 25 years of rule in the city by the Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) and its predecessors. Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city, is also its main economic hub, making this a significant loss for the ruling party.