Speaking to university students in Ankara on Friday, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated that the desire of the nation would be realized as far as a transition to an executive presidency is concerned.
When the audience cheered for an executive presidency during his speech, Erdoğan said, “God willing, the nation’s desire will be realized.”
Erdoğan’s remarks came after the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) on Thursday agreed on a constitutional amendment to expand Erdoğan’s power, with a draft expected to be presented to Parliament next week.
Turkey has long had a parliamentary system in which the president had only a symbolic role. As a result of a referendum in 2007, the president is now elected by the people rather than Parliament. In 2014 Erdoğan was elected president under a parliamentary system of governance. However, his ambition is to bring about an executive presidency with more powers vested in the head of state.