SABAH acquires details of AK Party’s presidential system proposal

Published 22.11.2012 14:45
Updated 22.11.2012 14:52

SABAH has acquired the fine details of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan's “Turkish model presidential system.”

The model, which similar to the final era of the Ottoman Empire will have the armed forces and the General Staff functioning separately under the Ministry of National Defense in an effort to curb military intervention, will operate under the following stipulations:

Presidential candidates must be a Turkish citizen over the age of 40 and a university graduate. They may be elected for up to two terms at five years each. As in the case of the U.S. model, the president will designate the vice-president candidate they wish to partner up with.

The president will have the authority to appoint and/or remove their own ministers. The assembly will not be engaged in censure motions, investigations or dropping the cabinet.

Ministers will be appointed outside of the assembly; however they will have to fulfill all requirements for being elected as a parliamentarian. Even if a parliamentarian has retired they will still not qualify to be a minister.

The president will be subject to trial for certain crimes including treason. The role of the Supreme Court will be taken over by the Constitutional Court, which will be authorized to try the president. A majority vote by the assembly will grant the authority to send the president to the superior court. A total 367 favorable votes will be necessary in order to try the president.

A variation from the U.S. system will be the right granted to rescind the assembly. In return, the assembly will also be able to remove the president from office. Should the president rescind the assembly or if the assembly removes the president from office, an election will be held immediately following. Regardless of whichever party chooses to make such a ruling both the assembly elections as well as a presidential election will be renewed with citizens made to vote in two separate ballot boxes, the reason being to prevent any abuse of power.

Yet another deviation from the Turkish model is the unitary structure of the assembly unlike the U.S. division between the House of Representatives and the Senate. The structure of the 550-person Turkey's Grand National Assembly will remain the same and there also unlike the United States, Turkey will not adopt a federal structure. Instead, Turkey's unitary structure will be preserved.

Like the U.S. system, ambassadors and other high-level appointments will be presented to the Senate for approval. In the model proposed by the AK Party, the president will directly appoint high level bureaucrats. Parliamentary elections and presidential elections will be held simultaneously every five years. According to the model, half of the parliament will be renewed every three years. The first reelection will be done through a drawing. A system will be implemented later in which those whose term has come to an end will have to re-enter elections.

This is a translation of an article originally written by Zübeyde Yalçın.

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