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The Turkish local elections of 2019 were held on Sunday 31 March 2019 throughout the 81 provinces of Turkey. A total of 30 metropolitan and 1,351 district municipal mayors, alongside 1,251 provincial and 20,500 municipal councillors were elected, in addition to numerous local non-partisan positions such as neighbourhood wardens (muhtars) and elderly people's councils.

2019 Turkish local elections

← 2014 31 March 2019
2 June (re-runs), 23 June (Istanbul re-run)
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All 30 metropolitan and 1,351 district municipal mayors of Turkey
All 1,251 provincial and 20,500 municipal councillors of Turkey
Opinion polls
Turnout84.67%
  President Erdoğan (2018) (cropped).jpg Kılıçdaroğlu (cropped).jpg Meral Akşener İYİ Party 1 (cropped).jpg
Leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu Meral Akşener
Party AK Party CHP İYİ
Alliance People's Alliance Nation Alliance[1] Nation Alliance[1]
Leader since 21 May 2017 22 May 2010 25 October 2017
Last election 800 mayors, 10,530 councillors, 42.87% 226 mayors, 4,161 councillors, 26.34% New party
Mayors 15 M, 745 D 11 M, 241 D 0 M, 23 D
Councillors 757 P, 10,173 M 184 P, 4,613 M 23 P, 1,092 M
Popular vote* 18,368,421 12,868,053 3,351,438
Percentage 42.55% 29.81% 7.76%
Swing Decrease 0.32 pp Increase 3.47 pp Increase 7.76 pp

  Devlet Bahçeli VOA 2015 (cropped).jpg Sezai Temelli Pervin Buldan.png
Leader Devlet Bahçeli Sezai Temelli
Pervin Buldan
Party MHP HDP
Alliance People's Alliance None
Leader since 6 July 1997 11 February 2018
Last election 166 mayors, 3,501 councillors, 17.82% 97 mayors, 1,432 councillors, 6.29%
Mayors 1 M, 233 D 3 M, 57 D
Councillors 188 P, 2,819 M 101 P, 1,230 M
Popular vote* 3,211,038 1,951,185
Percentage 7.44% 4.52%
Swing Decrease 10.38 pp Decrease 1.77 pp

Turkish Local Elections, 2019.png
Winners according to provincial capitals (top) and districts (bottom):
     AKP        CHP        MHP        HDP        TKP        Independent
     İYİ        SP        DSP        DP        BBP

* Parties are ordered according to votes cast for municipal councillors,[2] which best reflect the overall voting intentions of the electorate. Due to the different electoral systems used to elect different mayoral and councillor positions, the ordering of parties based on positions won can vary.

The governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) contested the elections in many provinces under a joint People's Alliance. Likewise, the Republican People's Party (CHP) and the İYİ Party entered some of the races under the Nation Alliance banner. The Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) did not openly announce support for either alliance, but did not field candidates in some areas to improve chances of opposition candidates.

Campaigning was described as distinctly negative and divisive, with the opposition criticising the government for Turkey's economic downturn, misuse of public funds and corruption. In response, the government alleged that the opposition parties were acting in the interests of 'foreign powers and terrorists'.[3] Particular controversy surrounded the AKP's allegations of financial fraud against the opposition's Ankara mayoral candidate Mansur Yavaş, which later turned out to have been made by an unverifiable source.[4] The use of video footage of the Christchurch terrorist attack by AKP leader and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during his election rallies additionally received international condemnation and caused diplomatic relations between Turkey and New Zealand to sour.[5] Five people were killed and two were injured during political violence on election day, in two separate incidents in Gaziantep and Malatya.[6][7] The election was criticised by observers due to excessive media bias in favour of the governing People's Alliance.

The members of the Nation Alliance were initially beset with issues concerning candidate selection and inner-party divisions, stemming from their general election loss in June 2018. However, both the CHP and the İYİ Party collectively managed to outperform expectations, securing 'shock' victories in Turkey's major metropolitan areas.[8] These included winning control of both Ankara and Istanbul, Turkey's capital and largest city respectively. The CHP also held control of İzmir, Turkey's third largest city, and now governs 5 of Turkey's 6 largest population centres (the only exception being Bursa, where the governing coalition narrowly won). The Communist Party won control of a provincial capital, namely Tunceli, for the first time. In provinces where the AKP and MHP contested as separate parties, there was a substantial swing from AKP candidates to the MHP. Nevertheless, AKP leader and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan claimed victory, announcing that the People's Alliance had secured 51.67% of the vote and thus maintained support from the majority of the electorate.[9]

The election was beset by a number of controversies, including an unexplained results blackout on election night just when the opposition were on the verge of victory in Istanbul. The Istanbul mayoral election, where CHP candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu defeated AKP candidate and former Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım by just under 14,000 votes (0.17%), remained disputed for two weeks after the vote. This result was made public after a blackout, by which point the CHP candidate was up by more than 24,000 votes. Numerous recounts, electoral complaints, legal disputes, alleged corruption, accusations of terrorist involvement and police operations took place after the election, initiated mainly by the AKP.[10][11] İmamoğlu was sworn in as mayor, though a new election was held on 23 June.[12] The result was an unexpected landslide victory for İmamoğlu, who defeated Yıldırım by over nine points, 54.2% to 45%.[13][14]

BackgroundEdit

Turkey holds local elections every five years in the final Sunday of March. The last election, held on 30 March 2014, resulted in a victory for the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP), which won control of both Istanbul and Ankara, Turkey's top two cities. The main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) came second, winning control of İzmir, Turkey's third largest city. The elections were the first test of support following widespread anti-government protests in Summer 2013 and a corruption scandal in December 2013. The elections resulted in numerous allegations of electoral fraud, as well as re-runs in districts such as Yalova and Ağrı where recounts and fraud allegations failed to return a decisive winner.

The 2019 elections followed two landmark elections that were held on 24 June 2018, namely a presidential vote and a parliamentary vote, where the incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was re-elected with 52.59% of the vote. With his re-election, he assumed widely expanded executive powers that were approved by voters in a highly controversial constitutional referendum in 2017. His AK Party lost its majority in the Grand National Assembly but retains its majority with support from the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), together with which the AKP forms an electoral alliance named the People's Alliance. The 2019 local elections were the last scheduled elections to be held in Turkey until 23 June 2023.

Early election speculationEdit

Following the election of the 27th Parliament of Turkey on 24 June 2018, the AKP government publicly announced its intention to bring the local elections forward from March 2019 to November 2018.[15] Although the opposition claimed they were ready for a local election, they did not publicly back the government's call.[16] It was speculated that the government's desire for an early election was related to the sharp economic downturn that took place shortly after the June 2018 elections, with fears that it would lead to a reduction in the AKP's vote share.[17]

The dates of local elections are enshrined in the Constitution of Turkey, meaning that any motion to hold them on a different date would require a constitutional amendment.[18] This would require a two-thirds majority in the Grand National Assembly or a three-fifths majority along with approval in a referendum. The People's Alliance between the AKP and MHP only held 57% of the seats, making the proposal unrealistic. The government subsequently dropped plans to bring the poll forward.

Positions electedEdit

The 2019 local elections were the second to be held following the 2013 Turkish local government reorganisation, which merged several municipalities and substantially reduced the number of councillors and mayors elected. Mayors and councillors are elected separately. District municipalities consist of two types; actual district municipalities (of which there are 921) and 397 town municipalities that serve even smaller settlements in rural provinces.[19] The elected positions are shown below.

Mayors
Type Elected
Metropolitan municipality 30
District municipality 1,318
 
Councillors
Type Elected
Municipal councillors 20,500
Provincial councillors 1,251

In addition to these partisan positions, numerous local non-partisan positions such as neighbourhood presidents (muhtars) and elderly people's councils were elected. According to 2018 figures, the number of muhtars due to be elected is 50,229.[20]

Municipal changes since 2014Edit

Removal of mayors for malpracticeEdit

 
All districts where mayors have been removed from office between 2014 and 2019[21]
     DBP (92) – PKK terrorism charges
     AKP (4) – FETÖ terrorism charges
     CHP (2) – Corruption charges
     MHP (1) – FETÖ terrorism charges

Following the 2016 Turkish coup d'état attempt on 15 July 2016, several mayors, mostly from the Kurdish Nationalist Democratic Regions Party (DBP), were removed from office by the Interior Ministry and were temporarily replaced by government-appointed trustees. Most of these mayors were removed from office due to charges of joining, aiding or conducting propaganda activities for a terrorist organisation, namely the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Several DBP district party executives were also suspended from office on terrorism charges. In addition, four AKP mayors and one MHP mayor were removed after being arrested for aiding the Gulen movement, which is known by the Turkish Government and its supporters as the Fethullah Gülen Terrorist Organisation (FETÖ), who were accused of perpetrating the coup.

The removal of mayors and district party executives began with a state of emergency decree on 1 September 2016, with the district Kaymakam being given the role of acting mayor in some instances.[22] As of 14 October 2018, four AKP mayors, one MHP mayor and 94 DBP mayors have been removed from office.[23]

In addition to removal on the grounds of national security, a number of mayors have been removed from office on corruption charges. In these cases, municipal councillors retained the right to appoint a successor, as opposed to the Interior Ministry appointing a trustee. On these grounds, the CHP mayors of Ataşehir and Beşiktaş, both districts of Istanbul, were removed from office on 8 December 2017 and 4 January 2018, respectively.[24][25] The CHP slammed the decisions as politically motivated, but the CHP majorities in both councils were able to elect a CHP successor in their place.[26]

'Fatigue' resignations of AKP mayorsEdit

On 30 May 2017, shortly after a controversial declaration of victory in the 2017 constitutional referendum and election as AK Party leader, President Erdoğan made a statement claiming that his party was suffering from 'metal fatigue' and called on poorly-performing party provincial executives to leave their posts. Seven AKP provincial chairmen resigned their posts by the end of 2017 in response to Erdoğan's call. The intention of the AKP party executive to 'regenerate' the party resulted in pressure on some of the party's more controversial, long-serving or poorly-performing mayors to resign.[27]

On 23 September 2017, Istanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş, in office since 2004, resigned.[28] This was followed by Düzce Mayor Mehmet Keleş on 2 October.[29] On 18 October, the Mayor of Niğde, Faruk Akdoğan, resigned.[30] On 23 October, the Mayor of Bursa, Recep Altepe, announced his resignation.[31] On 27 October, Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek resigned after weeks of unsuccessful negotiations with Erdoğan to retain his office.[32] On 30 October, Balıkesir Mayor Edip Uğur also resigned after initially refusing to heed to the party executive's pressure.[33] Making an emotional resignation statement, Uğur stated that his resignation was forced and that his family had received threats in the event he continued to resist.[34]

On 18 September 2018, the AKP Mayor of Ordu Enver Yılmaz announced his resignation. His resignation was seen as non-related to the 'metal fatigue' regeneration drive but due to personal disagreements with high-ranking party official and deputy leader Numan Kurtulmuş, who is an MP for Ordu.[32]

Defections between partiesEdit

A number of mayors switched parties between 2014 and 2019. A number of these defections were down to the formation of the İyi Party, which took away substantial support from the Nationalist Movement Party. A total of 10 municipal mayors switched to İYİ between the party's establishment on 25 October 2017 and 2019. The Mayor of Mersin, Burhanettin Kocamaz, switched to İYİ from the MHP on 4 December 2018, becoming the party's first metropolitan mayor.[35]

The Mayor of İnhisar in Bilecik, Ayhan Ödübek, joined the CHP in 2018 having resigned from the MHP in 2016.[36] On 9 May 2017, Mayor Mustafa Gül of Kemer, in Antalya, resigned from the MHP and joined the CHP. On 20 October 2018, Mayor Rasim Daşhan of Şaphane, in Kütahya, resigned from the CHP and joined the AKP.[37] On 13 November 2018, Mayor Gökhan Demirtaş of Gülüç, a small town in the Ereğli district of Zonguldak, resigned from the CHP and joined the AKP.[38]

Parties and alliancesEdit

Due to the first-past-the-post system used to elect mayors, the elections were preceded by several inter-party negotiations and calculations of tactical voting to improve the chances of defeating the candidates of certain parties.[39] Three broad alliances were formed in the run-up to the vote. Unlike in parliamentary elections where electoral alliances have legal foundations and affect the translation of votes into seats, the alliances formed for local elections do not have any legal foundations and merely consist of parties withdrawing their candidates in support for another.

The table below shows which party within the two alliances are contesting each provincial capital district. If the alliance agreement has not extended to that provincial capital and both parties of the alliance are contesting, then 'both' is shown in that alliance's column.

Province People's Nation
Adana MHP CHP
Adıyaman Both İYİ
Afyon Both İYİ
Ağrı AKP Both
Amasya Both CHP
Ankara AKP CHP
Antalya AKP CHP
Artvin AKP CHP
Aydın AKP CHP
Balıkesir AKP İYİ
Bilecik AKP CHP
Bingöl Both CHP
Bitlis AKP Both
Bolu AKP CHP
Burdur AKP CHP
Bursa AKP CHP
Çanakkale AKP CHP
 
Province People's Nation
Çankırı Both Both
Çorum Both Both
Denizli AKP İYİ
Diyarbakır AKP CHP
Edirne AKP CHP
Elazığ Both İYİ
Erzincan Both CHP
Erzurum AKP Both
Eskişehir AKP CHP
Gaziantep AKP İYİ
Giresun AKP CHP
Gümüşhane Both Both
Hakkâri AKP Both
Hatay AKP CHP
Isparta Both İYİ
Mersin MHP Both
Istanbul AKP CHP
 
Province People's Nation
İzmir AKP CHP
Kars MHP Both
Kastamonu Both CHP
Kayseri AKP İYİ
Kırklareli MHP CHP
Kırşehir Both CHP
Kocaeli AKP İYİ
Konya AKP İYİ
Kütahya Both Both
Malatya AKP CHP
Manisa MHP İYİ
Kahramanmaraş AKP CHP
Mardin AKP Both
Muğla AKP CHP
Muş AKP CHP
Nevşehir Both İYİ
Niğde Both Both
 
Province People's Nation
Ordu AKP CHP
Rize AKP Both
Sakarya AKP İYİ
Samsun AKP İYİ
Siirt AKP Both
Sinop AKP CHP
Sivas Both CHP
Tekirdağ AKP CHP
Tokat Both İYİ
Trabzon Both İYİ
Tunceli Both CHP
Şanlıurfa AKP SP*
Uşak Both Both
Van AKP Both
Yozgat Both İYİ
Zonguldak Both CHP
Aksaray Both İYİ
 
Province People's Nation
Bayburt Both Both
Karaman Both Both
Kırıkkale Both İYİ
Batman Both Both
Şırnak AKP CHP
Bartın Both CHP
Ardahan AKP Both
Iğdır MHP N/A^
Yalova AKP CHP
Karabük Both İYİ
Kilis Both İYİ
Osmaniye MHP İYİ
Düzce Both İYİ
* The Felicity Party (SP) was not part of the Nation Alliance in this election, but both Nation Alliance parties supported the SP candidate in Şanlıurfa due to a higher chance of winning.
^ In Iğdır, the Nation Alliance did not exist and the İYİ Party supported the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) candidate, who was the joint candidate of the People's Alliance. The İYİ Party announced its decision was because they would prefer the MHP candidate winning, as opposed to the HDP candidate.

People's Alliance (AKP and MHP)Edit

The People's Alliance was founded in February 2018 between the AKP and MHP as a union of parties supporting the re-election of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the 2018 presidential election. During the election campaign, the two parties were joined by the Great Union Party (BBP) and stated that the alliance would last until the next general elections 2023.

 
     CUMHUR
     MILLET
     HDP/DBP

Speculation continued after the 2018 general election as to whether the People's Alliance would remain for the local elections. Despite initial mixed signals, MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli announced in September 2018 that he intended to support AKP candidates in key races and continue the alliance into the local election.[40] After a series of disagreements with the AKP, particularly in relation to the reinsertion of the Student Oath, the MHP announced that it would be contesting the elections alone.[41] The 'temporary suspension' of the alliance was subsequently confirmed by Erdoğan.[42] However, a month later after a meeting between the two leaders, the Alliance was declared to have resumed, with the MHP subsequently pulling its candidates in favour of the AKP in numerous provinces, such as Ankara and Istanbul.[43]

Nation Alliance (CHP and İYİ)Edit

The Nation Alliance was the main opposition alliance during the 2018 general election, being formed by the CHP, the İyi Party, the Democrat Party and the Felicity Party. The Alliance was declared to have formally dissolved shortly after the elections. However, negotiations of a local election alliance between the CHP and the İyi Party continued in the latter months of 2018. The alliance was finalised on 12 December, with the İyi Party agreeing to not field mayoral candidates in Aydın, Muğla, Tekirdağ, Hatay, İzmir, Eskişehir, Ankara, Istanbul, Antalya, Bursa or Adana. Both parties would field a candidate in Mersin while the CHP would support the İyi Party's candidate in Balıkesir.[44]

On 18 December 2018, the CHP and İyi Party's joint candidate in Ankara was announced to be Mansur Yavaş, who narrowly lost to the AKP's candidate Melih Gökçek in the 2014 local election amid allegations of fraud. Upon announcing his candidacy, Yavaş declared himself to be the 'Nation Alliance' candidate.[45]

HDP-DBP AllianceEdit

With the establishment of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) in 2012, the existing dominant pro-Kurdish party, the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) restructured itself into a purely local election-based organisation and renamed itself to Democratic Regions Party (DBP). In the 2014 local elections, the DBP contested areas with a significant Kurdish population while the HDP ran in provinces where Kurdish populations were minimal. While the DBP won 100 mayors in 2014, the HDP failed to win any municipalities and won just 9 municipal councillors.

In August 2018, it was announced that the existing relationship between the HDP and DBP, where the latter would contest Kurdish populated regions, would be abandoned and the HDP would contest the election throughout the whole country.[46] The DBP announced its support for the HDP, with both parties launching a joint campaign workshop in Diyarbakır on 20 October.[47] The parties announced that other Kurdish parties were welcome to join their alliance, while stating that there was no intention to form an alliance with the main opposition CHP.[48] On 6 January 2019, six Kurdish parties agreed to join HDP after negotiations. The parties are Communist Party of Kurdistan, the Freedom Movement, the Revolutionary Eastern Culture Associations, the Human and Freedom Party, the Kurdish Democratic Platform and the Kurdistan Democratic Party – Turkey.[49]

Controversies and issuesEdit

Due to the small number of votes needed to swing the election results in some low-population districts, local elections in Turkey are known to experience more cases of alleged fraud than legislative or presidential elections. This was the case in the 2014 Turkish local elections where severe cases were reported in Ankara (where the 2014 mayoral vote remains disputed to this day), Yalova (where the election had to be repeated) and other important provinces such as Istanbul, Eskişehir and Antalya.[50] The 2014 election marked the first time a ballot official was sentenced to prison for electoral fraud, having been caught transferring opposition votes to the ruling AKP candidate.[51]

'Fake voters' controversyEdit

The preliminary electoral roll was published in January 2018 to allow voters to check their polling districts and make any changes during a 'complaint period'. Following the publication of voter lists, many opposition politicians alleged that voters had been deliberately switched from one district to a neighbouring district as a means of tipping the result to favour a certain candidate. Similar allegations have been made in the run-up to elections in the past.[52]

On 6 January, the Mayor of the CHP-held Istanbul district of Adalar publicised some research into the changes in his district's electoral roll between the 24 June 2018 elections and 2019, where the number of voters substantially increased by 7% in the space of six months.[53] The research found that up to 500 (56%) of the new voters had been transferred to Adalar from neighbouring districts such as Sultanbeyli, which are heavily pro-AKP and thus have an excess of AKP voters. Their addresses were recorded at either uninhabitable buildings or the local AKP district offices.[54] The move, which the mayor claimed to be an attempt by the government to engineer the result in Adalar to result in his defeat, was branded 'the biggest fake voter scandal in the history of the Republic'.[55]

In an effort to identify fake voters in other parts of the country, the local CHP offices in Balçova, İzmir announced the formation of a team of 200 people to raise awareness and locate electoral roll fraud.[56]

Burhanettin Kocamaz, Mersin mayorEdit

The Provincial Electoral Council has not ratified the mayoral candidacy of Burhanettin Kocamaz, who is running for the southern province of Mersin’s metropolitan municipality on the İYİ Party’s ticket. "İYİ Party, which has been encountering many difficulties and tricks, is going through another hoop today. The candidate lists, determined after months of work, have been submitted to the provincial electoral boards. But the candidacy document of Mr. Burhanettin Kocamaz, our candidate for Mersin Metropolitan Municipality, was not accepted by the election board on grounds that it was submitted after 5 p.m." said İYİ Party in a written statement on 19 February. The party’s statement also stressed that Kocamaz was a candidate likely to win a "landslide victory" in Mersin Province Meanwhile, Kocamaz called the incident a case of "betrayal" and "an inside job."[57] Later, Kocamaz was nominated on Democrat Party list. However Supreme Electoral Council (YSK) rejected his candidacy after İYİ Party made an objection to Provincial Electoral Council's statement.[58] Later on 28 February, Ayfer Yılmaz, former Minister of State was nominated as İYİ Party candidate on Democrat party list.[59]

Mass detention camps of UyghursEdit

In February 2019, after many democratic countries raised concerns about China's cultural genocide against Muslims for years, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemns the systematic assimilation, arbitrary arrests, cruel torture, political brainwashing in internment camps and prisons of more than one million Uyghurs and other Muslim communities by China and called on to end the human tragedy. Erdogan and AKP break its silence on Uyghurs, who share cultural and linguistic similarities with other Turkic ethnic groups but suffered long-time mistreatment by China as facing pressure from the ruling coalition Nationalist Movement Party and opposition parties such as İyi Party, Felicity Party, Great Union Party. Large pan-Turkic solidarity nationalism rallies to protest AKP’s inaction over the oppressive crackdown to Uyghurs mounts pressure ahead of the elections.[60][61][62][63][64]

Christchurch video at ralliesEdit

During some rallies President Erdoğan repeatedly showed video taken by the Christchurch mosque shooter to his supporters at campaign rallies for upcoming elections and said Australians and New Zealanders who came to Turkey with anti-Muslim sentiments "would be sent back in coffins like their grandfathers were" during the Gallipoli Campaign of World War I.[65]

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison condemned the "reckless" and "highly offensive" comments made by Erdoğan.[66]

ViolenceEdit

In Pütürge, province of Malatya, a polling station official and an election observer by Saadet Party were shot dead by an AKP member for stopping his attempt to make people cast open votes.[67][68] In other districts violence between AKP party and opposition broke out[69] during the day of the elections and in the following week.[70]

Violence between police and opposition observer came out in South East regions.[71] The celebration of the victory next to the main HDP buildings have been prevented by the intervention of police in many kurdish districts such Diyarbakir, Batman[72] and Siirt, HDP centres have been surrounded and forcefully emptied for public order.

The head of the observer mission from the Council of Europe’s Congress of Local and Regional Authorities stated that they were "not fully convinced that Turkey currently has the free and fair electoral environment which is necessary for genuinely democratic elections in line with European values and principles".[73]

Opinion pollsEdit

A number of opinion polls were conducted in the run-up to the election to gauge voting intentions. These included studies to predict overall vote shares and also the outcome of mayoral races in key cities. These can be viewed here.

Nation-wide summaryEdit

The below table shows nationwide opinion polls conducted to gauge overall vote shares.

Date Pollster Sample AKP CHP MHP HDP İYİ Others Lead
31 March 2019 Local elections 2019 42.5 29.6 7.2 5.6 7.4 7.7 14.2
26 February 2019 Konsensus 40.7 33.6 6.4 4.7 4.1 10.5 7.1
28 Dec 2018 – 3 Jan 2019 OPTIMAR 252 45.5 28.6 7.6 7.6 7.7 3.1 16.9
7–13 Oct 2018 ORC 5,186 40.3 29.7 19.5 6.3 2.9 1.1 10.6
11 July 2016 AKAM 8,890 40.6 32.3 11.7 11.6 N/A 3.8 8.3
30 March 2014 Local elections 2014 43,543,717 42.9 26.3 17.8 6.3 N/A 6.8 16.5

ResultsEdit

Key racesEdit

Mayoral races in major cities that received major coverage during and after the elections are summarised below.

Istanbul (annulled)
Metropolitan Mayor
Ekrem İmamoğlu
48.77%
Binali Yıldırım
48.61%
Others
2.62%
Winner: Ekrem İmamoğlu, CHP (margin: 0.16%)
      CHP GAIN from       AKP
 
Ankara
Metropolitan Mayor
Mansur Yavaş
50.93%
Mehmet Özhaseki
47.12%
Others
1.95%
Winner: Mansur Yavaş, CHP (margin: 3.81%)
      CHP GAIN from       AKP
 
İzmir
Metropolitan Mayor
Tunç Soyer
58.09%
Nihat Zeybekçi
38.68%
Others
3.23%
Winner: Tunç Soyer, CHP (margin: 19.41%)
      CHP HOLD
 
Bursa
Metropolitan Mayor
Alinur Aktaş
49.62%
Mustafa Bozbey
47.03%
Others
3.35%
Winner: Alinur Aktaş, AKP (margin: 2.59%)
      AKP HOLD
 
Antalya
Metropolitan Mayor
Muhittin Böcek
50.62%
Menderes Türel
46.27%
Others
3.11%
Winner: Muhittin Böcek, CHP (margin: 4.35%)
      CHP GAIN from       AKP
Party Justice and Development Party
AKP
Republican People's Party
CHP
Good Party
İYİ
Nationalist Movement Party
MHP
Peoples' Democratic Party
HDP
Felicity Party
SAADET
Democratic Left Party
DSP
Democratic Party
DP
Communist Party
TKP
Leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu Meral Akşener Devlet Bahçeli Sezai Temelli
Pervin Buldan
Temel Karamollaoğlu Önder Aksakal Gültekin Uysal Aydemir Güler
           
 
Metropolitan Municipalities 15 (50.00%) 11 (36.67%) 0 (0.00%) 1 (3.33%) 3 (10.00%) 0 (0.00%) 0 (0.00%) 0 (0.00%) 0 (0.00%)
15 / 30
11 / 30
0 / 30
1 / 30
3 / 30
0 / 30
0 / 30
0 / 30
0 / 30
District Municipalities 742 (56.47%) 241 (17.83%) 24 (1.77%) 233 (17.24%) 57 (4.21%) 21 (1.55%) 7 (0.52%) 8 (0.59%) 1 (0.07%)
742 / 1,351
241 / 1,351
24 / 1,351
233 / 1,351
57 / 1,351
21 / 1,351
7 / 1,351
8 / 1,351
1 / 1,351
Metropolitan Councillors 10,173 (49.04%) 4,613 (22.24%) 1,092 (5.26%) 2,819 (13.59%) 1,230 (5.93%) 295 (1.42%) 98 (0.47%) 135 (0.65%) 11 (0.05%)
10,173 / 20,498
4,613 / 20,498
1,092 / 20,498
2,819 / 20,498
1,293 / 20,498
295 / 20,498
98 / 20,498
135 / 20,498
11 / 20,498
Provincial Councillors 757 (59.51%) 184 (14.47%) 23 (1.81%) 188 (14.78%) 101 (7.94%) 3 (0.24%) 0 (0.0%) (0.08%) 3 (0.24%)
757 / 1,251
184 / 1,251
23 / 1,251
188 / 1,251
101 / 1,251
3 / 1,251
0 / 1,251
1 / 1,251
3 / 1,251

Changes in controlEdit

The list below shows the parties governing the capitals of the 81 provinces before and after the local elections. Provinces in bold denote metropolitan municipalities.

Summary
Party / alliance:
Before:
Elected:
Change:
 
Party totals
AKP CHP MHP HDP İYİ Others
48 14 7 0 1 11
39 21 11 8 0 2
-9 +7 +4 +8 -1 -9
 
Alliance totals
People's Nation HDP Non-aligned
55 15 0 11
50 21 8 2
-5 +6 +8 -9

Full listEdit

Province Before Elected
Adana MHP CHP
Adıyaman AKP AKP
Afyon AKP AKP
Ağrı IND AKP
Amasya AKP MHP
Ankara AKP CHP
Antalya AKP CHP
Artvin AKP CHP
Aydın CHP CHP
Balıkesir AKP AKP
Bilecik AKP CHP
Bingöl AKP AKP
Bitlis IND AKP
Bolu AKP CHP
Burdur CHP CHP
Bursa AKP AKP
Çanakkale CHP CHP
 
Province Before Elected
Çankırı AKP MHP
Çorum AKP AKP
Denizli AKP AKP
Diyarbakır IND HDP
Edirne CHP CHP
Elazığ AKP AKP
Erzincan AKP MHP
Erzurum AKP AKP
Eskişehir CHP CHP
Gaziantep AKP AKP
Giresun CHP AKP
Gümüşhane AKP AKP
Hakkâri IND HDP
Hatay CHP CHP
Isparta MHP AKP
Mersin İYİ CHP
Istanbul AKP CHP
 
Province Before Elected
İzmir CHP CHP
Kars MHP HDP
Kastamonu AKP MHP
Kayseri AKP AKP
Kırklareli CHP IND
Kırşehir AKP CHP
Kocaeli AKP AKP
Konya AKP AKP
Kütahya AKP MHP
Malatya AKP AKP
Manisa MHP MHP
K. Maraş AKP AKP
Mardin IND HDP
Muğla CHP CHP
Muş AKP AKP
Nevşehir AKP AKP
Niğde AKP AKP
 
Province Before Elected
Ordu AKP AKP
Rize AKP AKP
Sakarya AKP AKP
Samsun AKP AKP
Siirt IND HDP
Sinop CHP CHP
Sivas AKP AKP
Tekirdağ CHP CHP
Tokat AKP AKP
Trabzon AKP AKP
Tunceli IND TKP
Şanlıurfa AKP AKP
Uşak AKP AKP
Van IND HDP
Yozgat IND AKP
Zonguldak CHP AKP
Aksaray AKP AKP
 
Province Before Elected
Bayburt AKP MHP
Karaman AKP MHP
Kırıkkale AKP AKP
Batman IND HDP
Şırnak IND AKP
Bartın MHP MHP
Ardahan AKP CHP
Iğdır HDP HDP
Yalova CHP CHP
Karabük MHP MHP
Kilis AKP AKP
Osmaniye MHP MHP
Düzce AKP AKP

MapsEdit

By districtEdit

By provinceEdit

Re-runsEdit

Where a decisive victor could not be established due to small margins of victory and numerous formal complaints about misconduct, the Supreme Electoral Council (YSK) annulled the elections and ordered re-runs. Elections were annulled in 6 districts and 1 metropolitan municipality (namely Istanbul). Most of the re-runs (namely 4 of the 7 annulled elections) took place on 2 June 2019. Due to the lengthy process behind the controversial decision to annul the Istanbul vote, there was not enough time to schedule the re-run by 2 June, with the YSK deciding instead to hold the fresh election on 23 June.

2 JuneEdit

On 2 June, elections were repeated in the Honaz district of Denizli Province, the Yusufeli district of Artvin Province, the Keskin district of Kırıkkale Province and the town of Kesmetepe, within the district of Besni in Adıyaman Province.

Results of the 2 June 2019 repeat elections
Area Type Winner
31 March 2 June
Honaz (Denizli) District mayor CHP CHP
Yusufeli (Artvin) District mayor AKP AKP
Keskin (Kırıkkale) District mayor İYİ AKP
Kesmetepe (Adıyaman) Town mayor
Tie*
DSP
* In the 31 March elections in Kesmetepe, the CHP and Democrat Party both won 281 votes and came joint first. The DSP candidate formally complained about misconduct at one ballot box to the YSK and successfully petitioned for the election to be re-run.[74]

23 JuneEdit

 
Ekrem İmamoğlu (pictured here with his signature campaign 'love' sign), was re-elected with a landslide in June 2019 re-run, having initially won a narrow 0.1% majority in the 31 March vote

On 23 June, elections were repeated in the Istanbul metropolitan municipality. The results showed a substantial swing in favour of İmamoğlu, who increased his margin of victory to win 54.21% of the vote against Yıldırım's 44.99%.[75]

2019 Turkish local elections: Istanbul (re-run)
Party Candidate Votes % ±
CHP Ekrem İmamoğlu 4,741,868 54.2   5.4
AK Party Binali Yıldırım 3,935,453 45.0   3.6
Felicity Necdet Gökçınar 47,829 0.6   0.6
Patriotic Mustafa İlker Yücel 14,545 0.2   0.0
Independent All independents 6,769 0.1   0.1
Total valid votes 8,746,464 97.8 -
Rejected ballots 178,599 2.0 -
Turnout 8,925,063 84.4   0.5
CHP hold Swing   5.3
Registered electors 10,570,354

21 JulyEdit

The town (belde) of Demirci, in the district of Gülağaç in Aksaray Province, held re-run elections on 21 July 2019. The initial election, won by the Great Union Party (BBP) mayoral candidate, was annulled after the YSK cancelled the winning mayor's electoral certificate, leading to the resignation of the entire town council.[76] The re-run election was won by the same candidate, this time running under the AKP banner.[77]

4 AugustEdit

The town (belde) of Suvarlı, in the district of Besni in Adıyaman Province held re-run elections on 4 August 2019. The election, originally won by the İYİ Party, was annulled after the winning mayor's electoral certificate was cancelled due to a prior conviction that barred the elected mayor from holding office.[78] The re-run election was won by the AKP candidate, who became the first female mayor in the history of the province.[79]

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