Erdoğan planning to establish army of bureaucrats in new term

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AFP PHOTO

Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is planning to appoint 500 new bureaucrats under his administration if he is elected president in the June 24 presidential election, the Birgün daily reported on Monday.

According to a draft regulation prepared by the AKP, these 500 high-ranking public officials will work with the president for five years until the end of the president’s tenure and will not be required to be appointed as public servants.

These bureaucrats will have special rights and salary conditions and will be directly tied to the president, according to Birgün.

President Erdoğan announced in April that parliamentary and presidential elections, originally scheduled for November 2019 would instead be held on 24 June, meaning a new political system that will increase the powers of the president will take effect a year early.

Turkey is switching from a parliamentary to a presidential system of governance, abolishing the office of the prime minister and decreasing the powers of the parliament, following a narrowly approved referendum in April 2017. The changes take effect with the elections in June.

These bureaucrats will comprise governors, ambassadors, deputy ministers and undersecretaries.

The general-secretariat of the presidency will also be abolished and an undersecretariat for the presidency will be established. The president will also appoint five vice presidents.

In the new system of governance, 2.483 articles in 521 laws and government decrees will be abolished, while 2.470 articles will be amended.

The number of ministries, which is currently 25, in addition to four deputy prime ministers, will be reduced to 14. Seven ministries and the four deputy prime minister positions will be abolished. The EU Affairs Ministry and the Youth and Sports Ministry will be eliminated, while the economy, development and finance ministries will be merged under the name of the Finance, Economy and Development Ministry. The duties of some ministries will be assigned to other ministries.

President Erdoğan is harshly accused by his critics of establishing one-man rule in Turkey and destroying the separation of powers.

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