hundreds of football fans in the stadium and shout from the ranks, until it resounds: “Give him the mandate, let’s give him the mandate, give imamoğlu his mandate!” The scene of Saturday evening will be shared later on social media like crazy. With a mandate – “Mazbata”, it is the certificate of appointment for the mayor of Istanbul, largest city Turkey. Ekrem imamoğlu, that is to say Imamolu, of the center-left party, CHP, the office had on March 31. March won the local election with a paper-thin advantage. But officially started, the 48 was not allowed to-Year-old so far. Still fiercely arguing over the voting of the shares, via new Recounts, through complaints to the competition.

imamoğlu is considered to be a counterbalance to Erdogan

It would be the first time in a Long Time that it is not the government party, the AKP President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, would have been the most important mayor in the country – of all places, the office, Erdogan is personally so important. In Istanbul, he grew up, he began his career as a mayor. Long ago the battle for the city is observed also in the abroad attention. As a parable of where it is to govern the country goes under a President, which many accuse of becoming authoritarian.

local election in Turkey

So have voted, the Turks: Where to Erdogan’s Power eroded, and where he triumphed

This week, could now be the fate of the week. The Recounts to go to the end. Will be lost to the AKP in the election? Or you will apply for, as announced, a new election? And where would that lead to? Some people hold protests, even violence is possible.

On the weekend is prevented mayor in Beylikdüzü, where he has, until Recently, five years as district chief, much less people are governed. The district is located in the West of the mega-metropolis. The conversation has recognised imamoğlu at the cultural center. As he runs through the Lobby, there is applause. Imamoglus eyes are red. “A lot of breaks, we had not won since we started,” he says.

imamoğlu, Turkey’s Obama?

as surprising As his victory over the power machinery of the previously omnipotent appearing Erdogan that some see him as the next President came. Some even see a Parallel: As Erdogan imamoğlu comes from the conservative black sea region. As Erdogan imamoğlu is considered to be a believer, what is untypical for the more secular CHP. But decisive for the election victory was probably that imamoğlu in many ways is more of Erdogan is a counter-proposal.


local election in Turkey

A lesson for Erdogan – and a message to his Regime

Erdogan had hung heavy in the municipal election. His campaign was massive as always. The daily keynote speech, large projects, demonization of opponents as terrorists. Imamoğlu renounced demagogy, spoke of ideas for women, children and the environment. “I’m so sensitive to the environment in which I live,” he says. “Since my Childhood, I would like to take action against injustice when I see it.” You believe his Fans, you could keep the Imamoglus for something like the Turkish Obama: close to the people, nice, decent.

A small story circulating about his wife, Dilek, who is blonde, pretty, chic, and without a headscarf. There were ugly comments about the appearance of the wife of the challenging candidate Binali yıldırım. “Who insulted you, offended even me,” shot back Mrs. imamoğlu.

imamoğlu is aware of his Image as the good candidate – maybe he plays the card, sometimes also consciously. “We have conducted a positive campaign,” he says. “To divide the other to the society. I say: The Good guys win.”

“do not deceive the people with pointless projects,”

The resistance of the ACP is also the fear of losing income rises probably. Istanbul is the economic engine of the country, a money machine. There will President Erdogan in addition, some of the favorite and “Mega”-projects”, including a billion dollar Bosphorus channel. It is unclear how much influence the mayor on this the Ankara-controlled projects. Imamoğlu seems to think, enough. “I’m a rational person, I will reject a project without having it analyzed,” he says. “But we will not deceive the people with expensive, pointless projects.”

The AKP has not lost only Istanbul, but also the capital of Ankara and several other cities. The limited, necessarily, the ability of the Central government to take local influence. There are rumors that they now could try to neutralize the opposition mayor with a law that the Service takes power over parts of their budget.

imamoğlu has heard of it. That would be against the Constitution, he says factually. In addition, he has anyway, to make the city financially independent. The previous mayor would like to have looked in the direction of Ankara for profitable projects, he says. “I call it laziness.” Istanbul could generate its own funds. Imamoğlu is actually a business man. In the third Generation, he says. Food and construction, business administration he has also studied.

Many questions, he would compete these days, whether as a presidential candidate. Ambitious he is. Of himself he does not want to have the. “I always say the Same,” he says. “Only God knows.”

mad / Christine-Felice Röhrs / Ergin Hava / DPA

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Teodora Torrendo is an investigative journalist and is a correspondent for European Union. She is based in Zurich in Switzerland and her field of work include covering human rights violations which take place in the various countries in and outside Europe. She also reports about the political situation in European Union. She has worked with some reputed companies in Europe and is currently contributing to USA News as a freelance journalist. As someone who has a Masters’ degree in Human Rights she also delivers lectures on Intercultural Management to students of Human Rights. She is also an authority on the Arab world politics and their diversity.