Erdogan’s son-in-law resigns as finance minister
The son-in-law of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan resigned on Sunday as finance minister, citing health reasons in a statement on his verified Instagram account.
“After serving in ministerial posts for nearly five years, I took the decision not to continue my duty (as finance minister) due to health issues,” Berat Albayrak said.
He said he would spend more time with his family whom he said he “neglected”, according to the statement.
Albayrak, 42, is married to Erdogan’s elder daughter Esra and has been finance minister since 2018. He was energy minister before that between 2015 and 2018.
Whether the resignation will be accepted is not yet known.
When Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu resigned earlier this year, Erdogan refused to accept it and Soylu remains in his post today.
Albayrak’s resignation comes a day after Erdogan sacked the central bank governor after the Turkish lira lost 30 percent of its value against the US dollar since the start of the year.
The new governor is former finance minister Naci Agbal who replaced Murat Uysal, who was only in the role for 16 months.
Uysal was sacked by presidential decree on Saturday, as his predecessor Murat Cetinkaya was in July 2019.
There was speculation in Turkish media that Albayrak resigned over the decision to appoint Agbal.
But Erdogan’s ruling AKP party parliamentary deputy group chairman Mehmet Mus tweeted his support to Albayrak who was finance minister “during a very difficult period”.
“I hope he will continue in his role with the president’s approval,” Mus added.
His sentiments were echoed by deputy transport minister Omer Fatih Sayan, who tweeted: “I hope the resignation will not be accepted. Our country, nation and ummah (Muslim community) needs you.”
Some AKP MPs tweeted their support for him with the hashtag, #SeninleyizBeratAlbayrak, which means “We’re with you, Berat Albayrak.”
But the central bank’s former chief economist pushed out last year welcomed the news on Twitter.
“At this stage there was only one thing that could be done to return from the crisis, and that was done,” Hakan Kara said, adding: “It’s obvious what must be done at the first stage: reverse everything done in the past two years.”
During Albayrak’s two years as finance minister, Turkey suffered a currency crisis in 2018, a recession afterwards and the lira hit multiple record lows against the dollar this year.
Although it was never confirmed, it was often thought Albayrak was being groomed by Erdogan to succeed him.
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