Duvar English

Turkey’s High Election Board (YSK) has cancelled the mandate of Kadir Aydar, mayor of the southern Adana province’s Ceyhan district, on the grounds of his previous conviction on charges of “threatening someone with gun” and “possession of unregistered firearm.”

The municipal council will determine the district’s new mayor.

Aydar was chosen as the Ceyhan district mayor from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) during the March 31, 2019 local elections, after garnering 50.6 percent of the votes.

Claims of Aydar’s dismissal from duty initially surfaced on March 19. Aydar then issued a statement, saying that in his youth, he had been convicted on two separate charges and received a 10-month jail term for each offence. He said that the YSK’s decision to cancel a mandate could be applied only if the mayor in question had received a jail term longer than one year for each offense, and the judiciary was trying to join two offenses in a single prosecution to dismiss him from duty.

Aydar said that the YSK had previously seen his criminal record while registering him as a mayor candidate and had not raised an objection to his application.

“When I put my candidacy forward, I have submitted my criminal record document to the YSK, to the district election board. I have become a candidate with that [criminal record] document. I have entered the election and received my mandate. And I have been a mayor for the last 11 months,” he said.

“In other cases [in which the YSK cancelled mandates], the mayors had been stripped of their mandates since they had received a sentence over 12 months. I do not have a single sentence with a jail term over 12 months. I have two penalties, each having a jail term of 10 months. And their executions are over, and I have entered the election and won it,” he said.