Some 300 members of the far-right Good Party (İP) in Mersin resigned Sunday, in protest of Chairwoman Meral Akşener and the İP's alliance arrangements with the Republican People's Party (CHP).
"They tricked us. We garner support and votes for the İP. We are apologizing to the people of Mersin for deceiving them unknowingly," İbrahim Özel, the İP's Mersin head and a founding member of the party said on behalf of the 300 members who resigned alongside him, including the party's provincial districts heads and deputies.
İP Mersin deputy Hasan Doydu said they joined the party for democracy and justice, but Akşener has disregarded all these principles.
Criticizing the CHP and İP alliance, he stated that Akşener allied with the CHP that previously accused her of being a member of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), which is behind the failed coup in Turkey that took place in 2016. He pointed out that Akşener failed to uphold her promise of loyalty and competence within the party let alone governing the country, in line with these principles. Doydu added that Akşener is only interested in political bargaining rather than winning the elections.
Alliance talks between the CHP and İP for the March 31 local elections have been in the spotlight with numerous discussions and objections from party organizations. Some local party organizations protested the administration for not consulting them for alliance negotiations concerning their provinces and disregarding tendency surveys, public views and warnings while imposing a decision of the party alliance. Mersin, where the İP has the strongest voter base, has been also a part of discussions since CHP opted to field its own candidate in the province despite expectations that it will support the İP.
İP Manisa Deputy Tamer Akkal also declared his resignation yesterday, saying that the Nation Alliance between the İP and the CHP has inflicted irreparable damage on the party. "The declaration of a party, the political wing of the PKK terrorist organization, [the HDP] to not nominate a candidate in various metropolitan municipalities in support of the alliance has led me to finalize my decision, as a Turkish nationalist," he added. The HDP announced yesterday that they will not field their own mayoral candidates in three metropolitan municipalities, Istanbul, İzmir and Ankara, for the upcoming local elections.
The İP has been in distress since its poor performance in the June 24 elections. Dissatisfaction with the elections and İP members' uneasiness over their positions on candidate lists stoked tensions within the party. Many members of the party, including key founding members, resigned in protest of party policies.