Felicity Party (SP) Chairman Temel Karamollaoğlu on Sunday became the second leader after the İYİ (Good) Party’s Meral Akşener to collect the 100,000 signatures necessary to officially become a presidential candidate in the June 24 elections, Artıgerçek reported.
According to the report, Karamollaoğlu has collected 107,653 signatures, while Akşener has secured 182,910 names in support to date. Homeland Party (VP) leader Doğu Perinçek has obtained 31,445 signatures, while Democrat Party Chairman Vecdet Öz has gotten only 818.
Turkey will hold presidential and parliamentary elections on June 24. If none of the candidates can garner over 50 percent of the vote in the first round, then a second round will determine the president. According to the law, a politician cannot stand as a candidate for both president and a member of parliament.
Previously, 15 deputies from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) joined the İYİ Party as part of a tactical move to enable the new party to run in the snap presidential and parliamentary elections.
However, Akşener wanted to apply to the Supreme Election Board (YSK) as an independent candidate in order to show that she could collect the 100,000 signatures needed.
While the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) applied to the YSK to field current president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as their candidate, the CHP also announced Yalova deputy Muharrem İnce as their selection on Friday morning.