Turkish Environment Ministry spends 1.34m liras on 32 rental cars in three years

Responding to a parliamentary inquiry from the main opposition, Turkish Environment and Urbanization Minister Murat Kurum said that his ministry spent a whopping 1.34 million liras on 32 rental vehicles in the last three years.

File photo: Vehicles rented by the former AKP Istanbul Municipality were displayed in Istanbul's Yenikapı district by Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu in 2019.

Müzeyyen Yüce / DUVAR

Turkey's Environment and Urbanization Ministry spent 1.34 million Turkish Liras on the rental of 32 vehicles between 2018 and 2021, Minister Murat Kurum said in response to a parliamentary inquiry by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). 

The General Directorate of Land Registers hired 10 cars in each 2019 and 2020, and 12 in 2021, the minister said, adding that fuel costs for the vehicles totaled 395,366 liras in this period, while maintenance costs were taken on by the rental companies. 

"The vehicles are used as service cars for the works of the general directorate, and are not provided to anyone other than the office's staff," Kurum said in response to the parliamentary inquiry. 

The rental vehicles were 2018 model Renault Megans, Kurum said. 

Extravagant spending on rental vehicles by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has been a point of contention between the CHP and the government since Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu came into office in 2019. 

İmamoğlu revealed in 2019 that the AKP municipality administration he replaced had rented some 1,717 vehicles from a government-linked business. İmamoğlu later displayed these vehicles in Istanbul's Yenikapı district. 

Most recently, İmamoğlu revealed that the former AKP municipality administration had allocated its 827 rental vehicles for the use of the Presidency, AKP Headquarters and some government-linked foundations between 2011-2018.