ANKARA - Turkish Daily News
Four commissions will be established to solve the problems pending in Parliament through reconciliation, said the Parliament Speaker on Friday.
The commissions will be dealing with the drafting of a new Constitution, parliamentary bylaws, European Union-backed harmonization laws and the legislation that concerns political parties, Köksal Toptan, Speaker of the Grand National Assembly, told reporters in Parliament.
He said the joint parliamentary commissions would �meet the people's expectations of us to a large extent.�
�I believe that the commissions, predicted to be equally represented by the four political parties in Parliament, will successfully work,� said Toptan, urging each of the four parties to inform the Office of the Parliament Speaker before Oct. 1 of the two members proposed to join the planned commissions.
It is a matter for debate whether the opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, will appoint two members.
�I don't want to dwell upon negative suppositions,� said Toptan.
�There is no constitutional amendment package yet. But if a constitutional amendment is needed, nobody can object to this,� he said, adding that it was very importance for Parliament and political parties to produce joint work that would be beneficial for the country.
In an interview with NTV television Friday, CHP leader Deniz Baykal said he did not believe a constitutional amendment package drafted by Parliament, where the ruling party secures the overwhelming majority of the seats, would bring advantageous results for Turkey. However, he did not state in clear terms whether he would appoint two deputies for the proposed parliamentary commissions
�The Justice and Development Party, or AKP, is a ruling party, but a party which is labeled as a focal point of anti-secularism,� said Baykal referring to the closure case opened at the Constitutional Court.
�Thus, AKP staff making amendments to the Constitution is contradictory,� he said and issued a reminder of the reports that were leaked to the press that while working on an amendment package AKP leaders sent a copy of the draft to U.S. experts even before sharing it with the Turkish public.
Baykal called on the AKP to change their mentality before changing the Constitution.
�If the Constitution is altered, many subjects become open to exploitation,� he said.