Turkey: Opposition alliance to wait until December to declare joint candidate

Turkey:  Opposition alliance to wait until December to declare joint candidate
Update: 12 September 2022 15:57
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The opposition parties want to have enough time to focus on party propaganda, rather than on the candidate, sources say

Turkey’s opposition alliance stepped up efforts to agree on a joint candidate ahead of next year’s presidential elections, but due to strategic reasons, it may take several months to announce the candidate, Deutsche Welle Turkish reported.

Turkey is facing parliamentary and presidential elections by June next year. President Tayyip Erdogan, whose approval ratings have been in decline due to the economic woes in the country, has formally announced his presidential candidacy for re-election in June and has the support of ultranationalist MHP (Netionalist Movement Party.) Six opposition parties including the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) are working on putting forward a joint name to run against Erdogan at the elections, but yet to declare a candidate.

There were two reasons to wait until the winter months to announce the candidate, DW said. The first was to prevent the candidate being worn out prematurely because of ruling block attacks, and the second was to enable the opposition parties to have more time to conduct propaganda. 

The attention will focus on the candidate once a name will be declared and the parties will not have enough time to explain themselves, sources said. Therefore, the announcement of the name of the joint candidate is expected to take place in December or January.

Another important issue considered by the opposition regarding who the candidate will be and when the name will be announced is the course of the economy.

A poll conducted in August showed that the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) is still unable to capitalize on the negative economic situation marked by a runaway inflation and an unprecedented currency crisis.

While 28.7% of the participants said that they would vote for the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the next elections, 20.0% said they would vote for CHP, 11.9% for opposition Good Party (IYI), 11.5 for the pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP