The ruling Justice and Development Party's (AK Party) Istanbul mayoral candidate Binali Yıldırım said that he will share his opinions with 82 million citizens for the sake of nation on TV this Sunday, speaking yesterday during his meeting with the craft at İSTOÇ trade center in Bağcılar district of Istanbul.
In response to a citizen's criticism about İsmail Küçükkaya, a journalist who will moderate the debate, Yıldırım said: "No matter who will be [moderating]. It does not matter. No one should hide behind excuses."
Reminding the investments and projects led by the AK Party in the last 17 years, Yıldırım added: "Your works speak for yourself."
Istanbul mayoral candidates Binali Yıldırım of the AK Party and Ekrem Imamoğlu of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) will participate in a live televised debate on Sunday, June 16, at 9 p.m. moderated by Ismail Küçükkaya.
The program, to be held exactly one week before the election rerun on June 23, will be the first televised live debate in years between major candidates running for mayor of the country's largest city.
The debate will be broadcast on all television channels and Küçükkaya will give equal questions and equal speaking time to both candidates.
The debate will be held at Istanbul's Lütfi Kırdar Convention Center in the Şişli district on the European side.
Yıldırım to launch rallies next week
Meanwhile, the AK Party is preparing to boost its election campaign for the June 23 mayoral elections in Istanbul with rallies next week.
While it was reported by a Turkish daily that AK Party leader, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, would not hold a rally for the upcoming rerun mayoral elections in Istanbul; instead AK Party mayoral candidate Binali Yıldırım will take the stage during rallies in the final week.
Yıldırım's rallies will take place in several districts. The main strategy of the AK Party's election campaign is built on face-to-face meetings with citizens to learn their demands and expectations. In order to convey the pledges of the AK Party, Yıldırım and his crew prepared short movies under 15 different titles. In these movies, Yıldırım explains his pledges and policies personally.
Some of these pledges include one-hour free parking spaces, 10 gigabits of internet for young people, and at least one kindergarten for each neighborhood.
Elections in Istanbul, where Nation Alliance candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu was awarded the certificate of election with only a 13,729-vote difference, were followed by lengthy discussions and objections by parties demanding a do-over election due to irregularities and unlawfulness. The Supreme Election Council (YSK) ruled seven against four in favor and annulled the results of the mayoral election in Istanbul. The renewed election will be held on June 23. The YSK said its decision to annul the polls was based on unsigned result documents from the election and some ballot box officials not being civil servants.