CHP dissident rejects claims about bid for chairmanship
by Daily Sabah
ANKARAMay 13, 2017 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Daily Sabah
May 13, 2017 12:00 am
One of the leading dissenting voices within the Republican People's Party (CHP), Selin Sayek Böke, rejected claims that she will run for the chairmanship post after she resigned from her duties last week.
Böke said in a newspaper interview that she will not be a candidate for the chairmanship and that the CHP does not need an emergency congress in the near future. "I am not a candidate. This resignation is not about the CHP's congress process. I have no intention of becoming a candidate," Böke said, putting an end to rumors about her.
Her resignation last week led to speculation about whether she may run for the chairmanship amid growing unrest within the party after other dissidents called on Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to gather an emergency congress.
However, experts focusing on the party told Daily Sabah following her resignation that Böke made a mistake by coming out too early.
Tanju Tosun, an academic at Ege University who specializes in CHP politics, said Böke blew her chance at another opportunity for the chairmanship in the party, saying: "The bylaws of Turkish political parties do not allow anyone to succeed the chairman. Therefore, neither Mrs. Böke nor anyone else has a chance against Kılıçdaroğlu, unless he decides to leave," Tosun contended.
Also, Mustafa Altunoğlu, an academic at Anadolu University who also focuses his studies on the CHP, said Kılıçdaroğlu is very strong in his post at the moment. Stressing that Kılıçdaroğlu solidified his position in the party shortly after taking office, Altunoğlu said the CHP delegates are mostly on his side.
Whether Böke refused claims about her bid for the chairmanship post after she did not receive backing from the party grassroots and the public remains unknown.
"The CHP does not need an emergency congress process," Böke said in the interview. She added that her resignation paved the way for a more comfortable democratic space within the party. "I did not leave politics or the CHP."
Böke had recently had a falling out with party administrators following the April 16 referendum. The former spokeswoman was involved in an intraparty debate after she suggested that the party boycott Parliament if the referendum results were legally compromised. Another CHP deputy, Levent Gök, corrected her statements within a few hours and Böke was harshly criticized during a party meeting.
Separate from Böke's struggle against Kılıçdaroğlu, CHP Yalova deputy Muharrem İnce last week called for an emergency congress as soon as possible. "What should be done is easy. What is decent is that our chairman gathers an extraordinary congress in line with our bylaws," İnce said.