Opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Pervin Buldan on June 30 announced that they will field mayoral candidates in the metropolitan cities for the local elections that are scheduled for March 31, 2024.
Speaking in the eastern Van province during Eid visits, Buldan said a new election process will begin after the party’s congress to be held in September.
She stated that the government has used all resources of the state in the 2023 elections and added that “They used the state's media, money, judiciary, army and all its resources.”
“Local elections are of course important for all of us. The government will once again try to use all the resources of the state. We will continue our efforts to achieve great success in these elections in order to prove our existence in this struggle by nominating our candidates everywhere in all our provinces, especially in metropolitan cities,” Buldan said.
In the 2019 local elections, HDP did not field mayoral candidates in some metropolitan provinces such as Istanbul and Ankara. In the first round of the election in Istanbul, the main opposition Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu received 48.80% of the votes against the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) candidate Binali Yıldırım who received 48.55% of the votes.
After the Supreme Election Council (YSK) ruled to hold a reelection due to “irregularities,” İmamoğlu won by receiving 54.21% of the votes.
In Ankara in the 2019 local elections, CHP’s candidate Mansur Yavaş received 50.93% of the votes against AKP’s candidate Mehmet Özhaseki who received 47.12% of the votes.
Other than the CHP, only the Islamist Felicity Party from the opposition fielded mayoral candidates in both metropolitan provinces, which received around 1% of the votes in each.
For the 2023 presidential election, HDP and its Labor and Freedom Alliance did not nominate any presidential candidate and supported CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu's candidacy. During the election campaign the ruling People’s Alliance executives and President Recep Erdoğan have accused the opposition of “collaborating with the terrorist organizations and their political affiliations” in order to attract more votes in the elections.