Opposition’s İmamoğlu to win Istanbul rerun with 54 pct support - pollster

Turkey’s opposition candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu will win Istanbul ‘s mayoral vote rerun on June 23 by 9 percent more votes compared to his rival, the ruling party’s Binali Yıldırım, Turkey’s leading pollster Konda said on Wednesday.

Konda’s shared its latest survey conducted on June 15-16 with in-person interviews with 3,498 people in Istanbul’s 157 neighbourhoods.

Accordingly,  the secularist Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) İmamoğlu has increased his votes to 49 percent from 39.5 percent on March 31 polls, excluding undecided voters. Meanwhile, the Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) mayoral candidate Yıldırm’s votes increased to 40.9 percent from 39.3 percent over the same period.

When the undecided voters are distributed, İmamoğlu will receive 54 percent of the votes, while Yıldırım’s votes will be 45 percent, the pollster said.

İmamoğlu, who was a largely unknown district mayor of Istanbul’s Beylikdüzü district when he was announced as mayoral candidate in December, declared victory in March vote by a narrow margin of 13,000 votes.

According to many analysts, losing the control of Turkey’s main financial and cultural hub was a major blow to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his AKP.

Turkey’s Supreme Election Council (YSK) annulled the March vote in Istanbul in early May, after the AKP appealed the results, citing severe electoral irregularities.