Erdogan declared winner in Turkey’s presidential poll

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (pictured) and the alliance led by his ruling AK Party have respectively won majority in the presidential and legislative elections held simultaneously on Sunday, the Supreme Election Council (YSK) said early on Monday after 99% of votes were counted.

Erdogan won 52.5% of the votes while his nearest rival Muharrem Ince of Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) received 30.8% of votes.

The People’s Alliance of AK Party and MHP secured 53.6% of votes and won 343 seats while the National Alliance of CHP, HDP, SAADET, and iyi received 34% of the votes and won 190 seats.

Party-wise, the percentage of votes and number of seats won are AK party (42.4%, 293), MHP (11.1%, 50), CHP (22.7%, 146), HDP (11.6%, 67), SAADET (1.4%, 0) and iyi (10%, 44).

Kurdish voters have reason to smile as the pro-Kurdish HDP exceeded the 10% mark needed to enter parliament. With 67 seats, the party will form the 600-member chamber’s second-largest opposition faction. It is also remarkable that HDP’s presidential candidate Selahattin Demirtas, who has been jailed for treason charges which he denies, won 8.4% votes

Earlier, claiming victory based on unofficial results, Erdoğan said it is time to bury tensions related to elections and focus on the future of the country. He said the results have granted him presidency and executive rule.

No one should try to question the poll results and harm democracy to hide their own failures. With an almost 90% voter turnout, Turkey has taught the world a democracy lesson, he said.

Poll results questioned 

Turkey’s opposition parties cried foul alleging that state news agency Anadolu is fixing the returns.

The Republican People’s Party (CHP), which fielded Ince, and the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) appealed to polling station representatives not to leave the ballot boxes until all votes are counted.

CHP spokesman Bulent Tezcan said his party counted 10,000 ballot boxes which showed Erdogan at slightly above 46% and its own candidate Ince at 40 per cent.

HDP too asked its polling station representatives not to leave ballot boxes and protect their votes until the last vote is counted.

This time, the presidential and legislative polls were held simultaneously for the first time in Turkey’s history.

Erdogan advanced the polls by 18 months fearing the economy may slide further and affect his poll fortunes.