Turkey: Main opposition CHP to hold congress on Feb 3

- Yalova MP Muharrem Ince to be Republican People's Party leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu's main adversary for chairmanship

By Muhammet Emin Avundukluoglu

Turkey's main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) will hold its 36th ordinary congress on Feb. 3 in the capital Ankara.

The main theme of the congress to take place over the weekend will be "justice and bravery".

Eskisehir's metropolitan municipality mayor Yilmaz Buyukersen is expected to be the council chairman of the congress via the joint signature of the party's 1,266 delegates.

On the first day of the congress, the delegates will elect the party chairman. Current CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu is expected to assume the mantle once again.

However, he could face stiff competition from CHP Yalova lawmaker Muharrem Ince, who is expected to collect the required number of signatures to be an official candidate, according to the party bylaws.

On Sunday, the delegates will designate the party's assembly of 60 members, and the high disciplinary board of 15 members.

Former president of the Istanbul Bar Association Umit Kocasakal and the former head of the Judges and Prosecutors Association (YARSAV), Omer Faruk Eminagaoglu, have also announced their candidacy for the chairmanship. But they are not expected to collect enough signatures.

Kilicdaroglu pointed that the party's administrative body would be refreshed.

"This congress is the congress of solving Turkey's worsening issues," Kilicdaroglu told Anadolu Agency.

"We want to move hope to every corner and person of Turkey."

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Ince said that he wanted to change "the perception of the loser opposition" in Turkey if he were to be elected as the chairman.

He said that Turkey needs a change in politics ahead of the presidential election.

"First change in CHP then change in Turkey," said Ince -- his slogan for the chairmanship election.

Ince, a former deputy group chairman of the party, ran for the chairmanship against CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu in the 2014 party congress.

In 2014, 740 delegates had voted for Kilicdaroglu while Ince received the backing of 415.

Kilicdaroglu has been leading the party since May 2010.

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