The dissidents from the Republican People's Party (CHP) who have been repeatedly stressing the need for a change in leadership, are expected to submit signatures tomorrow which they claim will be sufficient for holding an extraordinary convention, despite some reports suggesting the contrary.
"We will submit sufficient number of signatures to the headquarters on Thursday. There are some reports on social media suggesting that some delegates withdrew their signatures, however we have no ability to acknowledge this," Gaye Usluer, a member of the CHP Party Assembly told Anadolu Agency (AA) yesterday.
Muharrem İnce, the leading figure of the dissidents within CHP, also wrote on Twitter on Monday that the signatures will be submitted on Thursday.
The headquarters will examine the signatures submitted and if the required number of signatures are collected, it will be obliged to call for an extraordinary convention within 45 days.
As the CHP party administration has been rejecting the idea to hold an extraordinary convention on the grounds that it will undermine preparations for upcoming local elections, Usluer highlighted that "this is just an excuse." She added that "In August, both the Good Party (İP) and the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) are holding conventions. This means it is not an obstacle to preparations for the local elections."
The process of collecting signatures which ended on Monday was launched by the dissidents on July 16 on the grounds that "the party has a leadership problem" and "the
CHP needs a change in order to be successful in the upcoming local elections."
There are also some debates that if the required number of signatures sit right on the threshold of the number of votes needed, the process might lead to a legal case. Many consider that such a scenario would cause significant harm to the party.
In relation to the issue, Usluer said that "If there is an overwhelming demand for a convention, the CHP administration should take these demands into consideration." She reiterated the expectations of the dissidents saying that "we expect our chairman to take a step which would prevent a more wearing process and start the process for an extraordinary convention."
The discussions for holding an extraordinary convention started following the June 24 elections. Some CHP deputies dissatisfied with the elections results hold Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu as responsible for the poor results and stressed that the party needs a change. Debates for holding a convention just after the elections is nothing new for the CHP, as the party previously experienced similar debates. The CHP has held 55 convention so far and 19 of those were extraordinary conventions.
On 3-4 February CHP held the 36th ordinary convention and on March 9-10 it held its 19th extraordinary convention for a change to party bylaws.
Commenting on the extraordinary convention held in March, Usluer stated that "If that day we could have reached common sense and made necessary regulations in bylaws accordingly, today we would not face this. Today we would have seen a different result of the June 24 elections."