Newly elected Siirt Municipality hangs banners showing debt left by trustee mayor

Newly elected Siirt Municipality, run by the opposition DEM Party, has hung banners across the province, showing the amount of debt left by the previous trustee mayor with the total debt standing at 456 million liras.

Duvar English

After the March 31st local elections, the newly elected Siirt Municipality, run by the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Equality and Democracy (DEM) Party, has hung banners showing the debt of the municipality left by the previous trustee mayor across the province.

Accordingly, the municipality currently has a total debt of 456 million liras, Mesopotamia News Agency reported.

208 million liras of this debt is owed to İlbank as a credit, which is a Turkish state-owned bank providing financial support to municipalities and villages for their construction and reconstruction projects, the banners showed.

87 million liras is owed to the Treasury, whereas 84 million liras is to firms. 

In the local elections, DEM Party’s Sofya Alağaş and Mehmet Kaysi received 49.64 percent of the votes and have been elected as Siirt co-mayors, followed by the AKP’s Ekrem Olğaç who remained at 37.14 percent.

After the 2019 local elections, the Interior Ministry appointed a trustee mayor, then-Siirt Governor Ali Fuat Atik, to Siirt Municipality in May 2020, as part of a practice mostly implemented in the Kurdish-majority southeastern provinces against democratically elected Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) mayors on the grounds of alleged “terrorism” investigations.

The trustee mayor’s various activities were described as “pillaging” by critics, such as enacting questionable zoning developments.