Story By: Feza Uzay, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
A man in Turkey was such an avid supporter of President Erdogan that he even named his son after him.
However, as the economy has soured, his opinion has changed, and as a result, he asked Turkish officials to change his son’s name but they refused due to fears of a backlash from the President’s party.
The unnamed man told the local news website Cumhuriyet: “I named my son ‘Recep Tayyip’ as at the time I was a member of the AK party (Justice and Development Party).”
However, the recent economic downturn led to the citizen losing faith in Erdogan, and as a result, he felt his son’s name was no longer appropriate.
He explained that he requested to have his son’s name changed at a government office in the Turkish province of Cankiri.
However, the officials at the office allegedly responded by saying: “If we change the boy’s name, they [the government] will change our work posts and damage our job prospects.”
The exasperated parent said: “We’ve reached a point where I can’t even change my son’s name.”
The concerned father gave more details about why his perception of the President and the AK party had changed since the birth of his son.
He said that as a self-employed worker, he has always paid the BAGKUR premium (a form of social security), which citizens pay into to get access to services such as health care and a pension.
He explained that this tax has become increasingly expensive, and now it’s tough for people to make ends meet.
He said that trying to access loans has become impossible, with many people exploring a loophole by opening ‘companies’ and asking for loans via their ‘new businesses’.
The government, in turn, issues the ‘new business’ a loan and then points out “look how many new companies are opening”.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been president of Turkey since 2014 and has the AK party to carry out numerous conservative and populist reforms in Turkey.
The COVID-19 pandemic hit the Turkish economy hard, and the past year has been marked by devaluations in the Turkish Lira (TRY) and the firing of several top central bankers.
It is not clear if the officials who refused to change the man’s son’s name are being investigated.