Turkish leader, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has signaled he plans to run for office again in 2023, but that this will be the last time.
Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party (AKP) are seeking to hold onto power in parliamentary and presidential elections next year. Erdogan has ruled for nearly 20 years, being elected first as prime minister in 2003 and then as president in 2014.
Turkey’s political system was redefined in 2017 with a constitutional amendment that made the presidency strong while removing the premiership. Erdogan was elected to the new role in 2018. According to the constitution, he is allowed to run twice for the position.
“Inshallah, in 2023, with the power of support I ask from you for the last time, we will start the construction of the Turkish Century and handover this blessed flag to our youth,” Erdogan told supporters at a rally in the Black Sea port of Samsun on Sunday, December 11.
Soaring inflation and the collapse in the value of the Turkish lira, have caused Erdogan’s poll numbers to fall.
Erdogan has spoken out against raising interest rates, which he believes causes inflation — the exact opposite of conventional economic thinking — leading to some charges of mismanagement by experts.
Erdogan touted his government’s achievements at the Sunday rally and vowed that he would defeat the AKP’s main rivals, the Republican People’s Party (CHP), in next year’s vote.
“We have established a service infrastructure that even developed countries envy,” he said. “Now, they say Turkey is a really different country. Every global crisis is conducive to a better understanding of our country’s power.”