Former ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputy Prof. Burhan Kuzu died on Nov. 1 of COVID-19 at the age of 65.
Kuzu, who was the former head of parliament's Constitution Commission, was receiving treatment at a hospital in Istanbul.
Being one of the founders of the AKP, Kuzu was a deputy for three consecutive terms.
He was also a member of the AKP's Central Decision and Executive Board (MKYK).
Government officials released messages of condolences following Kuzu's death, while also wishing a swift recovery for all COVID-19 patients.
Kuzu in March had downplayed the impact of the virus, saying that it's nothing more than an exaggeration of social media.
Ebola 1976’da 13 bin;Sars 2002’de 8 bin;Mers 2012’de 858;Domuz gribi 2009’da 8238 can aldı.Aslında yakalanan kişiler ile ölenlerin oranı Covid-19’dan daha fazla.Daha çabuk yayılıyor ama daha az öldürücü Peki neden dünya diken üstü?Sosyal medyanın abartısı dışında bir şey mi var?— Prof Dr Burhan Kuzu (@BurhanKuzu) March 23, 2020
He had also praised Turkey's efforts in curbing the spread of the virus in April, as he slammed the opposition for urging the government to act more.
Korona Ülkemizde çok korkulacak düzeyde ilerlemiyor şükür.Bu durum yeni virüsün çıkmasına neden olmuş o da”kudurma hastalığı”İşte şimdi yandık çünkü bunun tedavisi de yok aşısı da yok.— Prof Dr Burhan Kuzu (@BurhanKuzu) April 20, 2020
Kuzu has always been a controversial figure in Turkish politics. In addition to him being one of the architects of the country's current executive presidential system, his links to an Iranian drug lord were being investigated.
Ak partimizin 17 yıllık iktidarı süresince yapmış olduğu en büyük icraatı ve benim de mimarı olduğum başkanlık sistemini tartışmaya açmak, ülkemizin geleceğine yapılacak en büyük ihanettir.Parlementer sistemin koalisyonlar mezarlığını hortlatmak siyasi istikrarın bitişi demektir.— Prof Dr Burhan Kuzu (@BurhanKuzu) June 27, 2019
He was on trial on charges of interfering in the judicial process to secure the release of Iranian drug lord Naji Sharifi Zindashti. Prosecutors were seeking up to five years in jail.
Kuzu was the subject of another probe on allegations of preventing the release of Zindashti's enemy, Orhan Ünğan, from prison via pressuring the judges.Second probe launched into former AKP MP over trying to prevent release of Iranian drug lord's enemy