With only a week left to the March 31 local elections, the far-right Good Party (İP) was rocked Sunday after 168 of its members resigned.
The İP's party organization in central Turkey's Kırıkkale and Ferruh Çetiner, a deputy and party supreme board member, resigned from the party and joined the ranks of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) over the weekend.
"We will plant the flag of three crescents [referring to party flag of MHP] in Kırıkkale municipality in the upcoming elections. We are honored to see our friends among us once again. Welcome home. With your support, we will reach our target stronger and with more resolute steps," Erdal Baloğlu, MHP Kırıkkale province head said in a written statement. Alliance talks between the Republican People's Party (CHP) and the İP for the March 31 local elections have come under the spotlight because of numerous discussions and objections from both party's grassroots organizations. Many local members protested the administration for not consulting them before alliance negotiations concerning their provinces and disregarding tendency surveys, public views and warnings. The İP has been in a state of disarray since its poor performance in the June 24 general elections last year. Dissatisfaction with the election results and İP members' uneasiness over their positions on candidate lists has stoked tensions within the party. Many members, including a number of key founders, have resigned since in protest of party policies.