June 4, 2023

Days earlier than Turkey set off for a very powerful presidential election in its trendy historical past, most opinion polls confirmed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan trailing opposition chief Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.

Nonetheless, on Sunday, observers and voters had been baffled after the outcomes confirmed Erdogan main his rival by a large margin.

Based on Ahmet Yener, head of the election fee, with greater than 99 p.c of the votes counted, Justice and Growth Get together (AKP) chief Erdogan acquired 49.51 p.c of the vote.

Kiliçdaroglu, chief of the Republican Folks’s Get together (CHP), gained 44.89% of the vote, Yener stated, citing the outcomes of the Supreme Electoral Council.

Since not one of the candidates acquired greater than 50 p.c of the votes, the second spherical will happen on Might 28.

Sonar Chagaptai, a senior fellow on the Washington Institute, stated the outcomes fell in need of expectations. “Erdogan is main by about 3 proportion factors or extra… it’s wonderful,” he informed Al Jazeera from the capital Ankara.

In a Might 6-7 ballot, revered pollster Konda rated Kilicdaroglu’s assist at 49.3 p.c and 43.7 p.c in favor of the 69-year-old incumbent.

One other ballot of the political analysis firm Gezichi confirmed Kilicdaroglu leads Erdogan by 1 level, and 46.9 p.c assist the 74-year-old opposition chief.

Al Jazeera’s Sinem Koseoglu, reporting from Istanbul, stated that opinion polls in Turkey are typically not very dependable.

“Earlier than the election, many opinion polls had been criticized and accused of placing their affiliated get together or chief ahead,” she stated. “In a manner, this [election] exhibits us that opinion polls are politicized… and they’re making an attempt to affect voters.”

Private survey performed on Might 10-11 amongst virtually 4,000 individuals orc company predicted a sweeping first-round victory for the CHP candidate with 51.7% assist.

On Thursday, after Motherland Get together chief Muharram withdrew from the presidential race, many anticipated it might enhance the possibilities of Kilicdarogol and his six-party Nationwide Alliance. Ince remained on the poll and acquired 0.44 p.c of the vote on Sunday.

Erdogan’s supporters collect outdoors the AKP headquarters in Istanbul after the polls shut on Might 14, 2023. [Francisco Seco/AP Photo]

One of many few polls that predicted Erdogan’s victory was Optimar, seen by many as a government-oriented company. He predicted that the President would obtain an absolute majority of fifty.4 p.c.

Sinan Ogan of the ATA Alliance, the third candidate, unexpectedly acquired 5.17% of the vote. In most polls, the nationwide chief scored between 2 and 4 p.c.

Ogan is prone to play a key position within the second spherical as each Erdogan and Kilicdagolu will attempt to win his assist and his votes.


Opposition voters expressed dismay and mistrust after Erdogan’s speech within the first spherical.

Sunday’s presidential and parliamentary elections had been the largest problem for Erdogan in his 20 years in workplace in Turkey. He has not misplaced an election since 1994, when he grew to become mayor of Istanbul.

The election came about within the midst of a deepening cost-of-living disaster and runaway inflation.

The February earthquakes in southeastern Turkey had been broadly believed to undermine Erdogan’s reputation after he was closely criticized for his authorities’s response to the catastrophe and its failure to implement constructing codes. Critics of Erdogan claimed that these components prompted the deaths of greater than 50,000 individuals.

Reporting from Gaziantep, Al Jazeera correspondent Zeina Khodr stated the southern provinces proceed to point out assist for Erdogan’s alliance.

That is historically [AK Party] fortresses, provinces hit arduous by the earthquake, so the loyalty of the individuals has not been shaken,” Khodr stated.

“Sure, after the earthquakes there was anger on the preliminary sluggish authorities response. Furthermore, there may be anger that reconstruction has not begun in earnings. However the AKP has retained its assist within the area,” she stated.

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