European Charter of local self government discussed at UCLG-MEWA

United Cities and Local Governments Middle East and West Asia Section (UCLG-MEWA), which is the umbrella organization of the local and regional authorities and their unions operating in the Middle East and West Asia region, has initiated talks in which academics and experts in the field of “local authorities” will participate.

The first talk on “European Charter of Local Self Government and Problems in Its Implementation”, which Turkish President Abdullah GUL has recently mentioned with the following words; “European Charter of Local Self Government will solve many problems of Turkey. One step further is autonomy. I don’t think it will be good for us. Yet, it can still be discussed”, was held at the UCLG-MEWA Secretariat, located in Sultanahmet/Istanbul on 19th of February, Wednesday at 15:30-17:00, by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Erbay ARIKBOĞA, who is the Head of Marmara University, Faculty of Political Sciences, Department of Local Administrations and Local Self Government. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Erbay ARIKBOĞA answered interesting questions directed to him by the audience, at the last part of the program with intense participation.

ARIKBOĞA, who dealt with central audit and local self governance stressed that the charter of local self government does not translate into division or federation. ARIKBOĞA, who stated that “local government is inevitably related to democracy, added that the authorities of the local governments which were empowered by laws are restricted by circulars and directives which are contrary to the spirit of the laws, and that the bureaucrats who are in a position to implement these laws are in need of a mentality transformation. ARIKBOĞA, who drew a striking analogy regarding the issue, stated that the central government in Turkey sends the same suit to both Kars and Antalya; however, it needs to send the thread for them to weave their own fabric, instead.

The program was concluded by presentation of a plaque by Mr. Mehmet DUMAN, UCLG-MEWA Secretary General, to Assoc. Prof. Dr. Erbay ARIKBOĞA.