Main opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has vowed he would hamper any attempt on a division within his Republican People’s Party (CHP), as rumors swirl that a former presidential candidate and a prominent member from the party is set to launch his own after resigning.
“They will want to divide us. But there’s something no one should ever forget: The CHP is the castle of the Republic of Turkey,” the CHP leader said, indirectly referring to a potential move by Muharrem İnce to split from the CHP.
The CHP promises to establish a strong parliamentarian system and will do this with an understanding of politics that accepts accountability in its wrongdoings, Kılıçdaroğlu said.
“They will want to block us while we hold on to this goal,” he said on Aug. 8 ahead of a party assembly meeting.
Kılıçdaroğlu held the CHP’s first meeting with the new party assembly members after its recent 37th Ordinary Congress.
“They will threaten us with imprisonment. Sometimes they will put our MPs in jail. They will want to frighten us with their attacks. But we will fight them all,” he said and blamed the ruling party for attempting to divide the CHP.
“We are one of the most deeply established parties in the world. When we look at 100 years of history, there has been no change in our line. We have maintained a line that aims at contemporary civilization, democracy, equality of women and men, and that the income distribution is balanced,” he stated.
İnce, a prominent member and former presidential candidate of CHP, has earlier openly criticized Kılıçdaroğlu for cracking down on dissident voices within the party amid hinted that he might form his own party by the end of this year.
İnce, who once tried to topple Kılıçdaroğlu, did not run against him in the latest convention but supported some like-minded dissident members’ attempt to enter the 60-member Party Assembly. The internal elections proved Kılıçdaroğlu’s ultimate leadership at the party at the expense of İnce’s frustration.
In the aftermath of the convention, reports quoting some close associates of İnce suggested that he was deciding on whether he should quit the party and to hit the road for a new political movement which would have republican values at its heart.
Hurriyet Daily News