Pollster says ‘no’ votes in the lead by 1-2 points

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People walk in front of "NO" banners on April 6, 2017 in İstanbul, 10 days ahead of the referendum on whether to change the current parliamentary system into an executive presidency. On April 16, 2017, the Turkish public will vote on whether to change the current parliamentary system into an executive presidency. / AFP PHOTO / YASIN AKGUL

SONAR polling company president Hakan Bayrakçı has said about 51-52 percent of people will vote “no” in a referendum next Sunday, underlining that civil servants would not dare to admit to a pollster their intent to vote against the proposed measures, news website Diken reported on Sunday.

“It is not possible for a civil servant to admit to voting ‘no’ to a pollster. They fear losing their job. Therefore, no polling company can get the views of 4 percent of the electorate,” said Bayrakçı, noting that civil servants constitute about 3.5 to 4 percent of society.

According to Bayrakçı that is why other polling companies show the “yes” camp as being one to two points ahead.

Bayrakçı stated that 10 percent of undecided voters have made their decision a week ahead of referendum.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), backed by the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), pushed through the legislation that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan says will bring the strong leadership needed to prevent a return of the fragile coalition governments of the past.

The Republican People’s Party (CHP) and pro-Kurdish HDP fear the reform will fuel authoritarianism.

The reform will enable Erdoğan to appoint and dismiss government ministers, take back the leadership of the ruling party and govern until 2029.

The plans foresee presidential and general elections in 2019, with a maximum of two five-year terms.

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