CHP wins in Türkiye’s local elections
Date Added: 01 April 2024

The Turkish opposition Republican Peoples’ Party (CHP) secured an unlikely and historic victory at the country’s local elections on Sunday.

The CHP became the first since the ruling AK Party (AKP) was formed in 2001 to beat them in a nationwide count, while also winning the mayoralties of all of Türkiye’s five largest cities.

With most of the votes counted, Istanbul’s incumbent Ekrem İmamoglu led by 10 percentage points in the mayoral race in Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city, while his Republican People’s Party (CHP) retained Ankara and gained 15 other mayoral seats in cities nationwide.

In the Turkish capital Ankara, Republican People’s Party (CHP) candidate and incumbent Mayor Mansur Yavaş claimed victory.

The capital, which has a population of over 5.6 million, has some 4,304,874 voters and boasted a participation rate of over 76.61% in the election.

Elsewhere, the CHP’s Cemil Tugay strolled to victory in Türkiye’s third-largest city and historically CHP-supporting İzmir, while Zeydan Karalar won himself a second term as mayor of fifth-largest city Adana with a comfortable margin.

In Bursa, the country’s fourth-largest city, CHP candidate Mustafa Bozbey unseated AKP mayor Alinur Aktas, finishing the night with a nine per cent margin.

In total, the CHP now controls 15 of Türkiye’s 30 metropolitan municipalities and 21 of its 51 provincial municipalities. The AKP controls 11 metropolitan municipalities and 12 provincial municipalities.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressed supporters in Ankara shortly after midnight, stressing that “the real winner of these elections is democracy and our national will.”

He added that Turkish democracy has “once again proven its maturity” and thanked all those who turned out to vote.

According to 92.92% of ballot boxes opened in Istanbul, Europe’s largest city and the country’s economic engine, İmamoglu had 50.92% support compared with 40.05% for AKP challenger Murat Kurum, a former minister in Erdoğan’s national government.

Polls had predicted a tight contest in Istanbul and possible CHP losses across the country.