The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), along with its ally Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), is reportedly planning to decrease the speech durations of lawmakers in parliament.
The AKP, which also seeks to amend parliament bylaws, wants to prevent opposition deputies from delaying the approval of draft bills submitted by the ruling party via limiting their speeches, daily Birgün reported on Aug. 11.
The move was slammed by the opposition for aiming to censor their speeches, who said that the influence of the deputies in parliament will cease completely if such limitation is implemented.
According to the regulations currently being worked on by the AKP and the MHP, the speech duration of each lawmaker will be cut in half.
Currently, speeches on behalf of political party groups and commissions are limited to 20 minutes, while members can speak for 10 minutes. For the second speeches, the duration is decreased to half. If the AKP and the MHP succeed in implementing their plan, the durations will be decreased to 10, 5 and 3 minutes respectively, Birgün said.
In 2018, the speech times when discussing international agreements was decreased from 20 to 5 minutes and from 10 to 3 minutes.Majority of Turkish people want to return to parliamentary system: İYİ Party leader Akşener
Speaking to Birgün, main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Group Deputy Chair Özgür Özel said that the government wants to turn parliament into a "legislation machine."
"Parliament means a place to speak," Özel said, adding that there isn't sufficient environment for debate already.
"This attempt of the AKP is clearly in violation of the constitution," he also said.
Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) deputy Mehmet Rüştü Tiryaki also slammed the move, saying that it aims to prevent opposition parties from carrying out their duties.
"This will be one of the corner stones on the path to dictatorship," Tiryaki said, adding that the party would resist against it.AKP plans on changing electoral system when parliament reopens