Mayors from the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) will assemble at party headquarters in Ankara on Sept. 5-6 within the framework of preparations for the upcoming local elections in 2019. The ruling party will gather AK Party mayors in the context of preparations for the local elections in 2019 ahead of its traditional Advisory and Assessment Camp, which will be held in the province of Afyonkarahisar on Oct. 5-8. The first day of the meeting will be conducted under the chairmanship of Erol Kaya, AK Party vice chairman responsible for local administrations. On the second day, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will chair the meeting and is expected to provide recommendations to AK Party mayors regarding their efforts in the upcoming municipal elections.
Attaching great importance to the forthcoming municipal elections, the AK Party has long measured the performance of its mayors in the context of the party's efforts to rejuvenate party officials. The AK Party has been preparing periodic reports to evaluate the effectiveness of the mayors, while also conducting field studies for further assessment.
Compiling the opinions of provincial and district organizations regarding these mayors, analyzing civilian complaints and opinions will also be a determining factor in measuring how successful the mayors have been so far. The AK Party has ramped up these efforts since President Erdoğan signaled that the AK Party should reduce burnout among politicians and rejuvenate its members for the upcoming presidential and municipal elections, which will be held in two years' time.
The president has been calling for intra-party and local administrative changes since the first day of his chairmanship. Criticizing some local administrators and fellow party members for their lack of enthusiasm in the run-up to the April 16 referendum, Erdoğan even called on those who show signs of fatigue to step down. "Our fellow friends in successful branches will, of course, continue their duties. But, I guess you can also agree that comprehensive change is needed at the local administrative level," Erdoğan said previously in July.
The AK Party is expected to hold its 26th Advisory and Assessment Camp in Afyonkarahisar province from Oct. 5 to Oct. 8. During the AK Party's camp, President Erdoğan will give a speech to ministers, AK Party deputies and founding members. Several subjects are expected to be on the AK Party's agenda, including the economy and the counterterrorism fight.