Turkish policeman dismissed by gov’t decree denied job as bus driver

A policeman who was dismissed through a state of emergency decree (KHK) that was introduced in the wake of the 2016 coup attempt was denied a position as a service bus driver in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Kayseri.

Hacı Bişkin / DUVAR 

Turkish policeman Aytaç Saçmalı, who was dismissed as a result of a state of emergency decree (KHK) that was introduced after the 2016 coup attempt, applied for a job as a service bus driver for the Kayseri Metropolitan Municipality.

The municipality rejected his application on the basis that he had been dismissed by a government decree.

Aytaç Saçmalı had been working as a driver carrying school kids in Ankara and moved to Kayseri with the intention of doing the same job there. Yet an official from the municipality of Kayseri refused to grant him a “certificate of suitability.”

The municipality of Kayseri requested documents such as a special driver’s certificate, a criminal record paper as well as a psycho-technical document in order for Saçmalı to work as a driver.

Though he provided those documents, Saçmalı was still denied the job.

Saçmalı said that what happened to him was a violation of human rights. “I want to live like every human being,” he said.

“I am not corrupt, I never stole from anyone. But I can’t be a service bus driver because I was dismissed by a government decree. I have many friends who currently experience similar issues because they were dismissed by a decree,” Saçmalı said.

“I want this injustice to be corrected. I want to live humanely and I want to enjoy the rights that everyone enjoys. This discrimination has to end!”

Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) MP Kocaeli Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu asked Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu what happened. Gergerlioğlu also requested an investigation from the Parliamentary Human Rights Investigation Committee.