It is claimed on social media that election observer badges that carry the logo of the Ministry of the Interior are used by some persons to gain access to the voting area despite the fact that the Ministry of the Interior cannot issue badges that grant authorization to observe or intervene with the voting processes.
The allegation that was also shared by CHP MP Ahmet Akın received more than 10 thousand shares and 8 thousand likes.
MP Aydın’s Tweet: PLEASE SHARE! We came across to this in Erzurum. The Ministry of the Interior cannot issue election observer badges. Only the political parties that take part in the election can. Please report people who carry badges of this sort to your district’s election board!
The allegation that the badges carrying the inscription “Ministry of the Interior Election Observer” cannot be used to observe the voting processes is true. Election observer badges can be issued only by political parties and the badges for polling clerks can be issued by Supreme Electoral Council.
Upon teyit.org’s request for comment, Supreme Electoral Council officials announced that the Council only accepts the election observer badges issued by political parties and polling clerk badges issued by Supreme Electoral Council, and the Ministry of the Interior does not issue badges that provide access to the voting areas. According to the articles 19 and 20 of Notice 135, people who are granted access to the voting areas comprise of election observers and polling clerks. In addition, the people who can access to the voting areas are specified under the law no: 298; The Law Concerning the General Provisions and Registers of Elections.
Ministry of the Interior: “We did not grant anyone badges providing access to the voting areas.”
Supreme Electoral Council officials announced that the Ministry issues badges of this sort to grant access to the security forces whereas the Ministry of the Interior stated that they did not appoint anyone around the voting areas and did not give anyone the said badges.
Supreme Electoral Council also sent a statement to the representatives of political parties in an effort to clarify the matter;
We are receiving reports that persons in various provinces use badges that carry the inscription; “Ministry of the Interior, Election Safety, Full Access” and a QR code. Necessary reports are sent to the district electoral boards and Supreme Electoral Council due to the cards’ being contrary to the law and the suspicions concerning the practice. Upon the evaluation of the Council, it is decided that the persons carrying these badges should not be allowed into the district electoral boards, schools in which the election takes place and around the ballot boxes.
This decision is to be sent to the electoral and polling boards as a message. However, it is of key importance that the party representatives also show sensitivity to the matter and report the persons [who attempt to use these badges] to the security forces and electoral and polling boards. The people who are allowed around the voting areas are specified under the law no: 298 and in the corresponding notices and persons who are not included in the said documents may not access the voting areas (even if they are public officials).
The QR code on the badges redirect to the website of the Ministry of the Interior
The QR code visible on the badges redirect to the website of the Ministry of the Interior. However, it is possible to create QR codes for any link using websites such as QR Code Generator.
Translation: Rumeysa Sena Şahbaz