Resignations of top economy chiefs confirmed
The Turkish central bank governor and the head of the treasury have resigned after severe economic turmoil resulted in the disruption of an IMF-backed disinflation program, the deputy prime minister confirmed Monday, February 26.
"Deputies are now taking care of the treasury and the central bank. We have started work for new appointments in the shortest possible time," Mesut Yilmaz told reporters after a meeting with Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and their third coalition partner, Devlet Bahceli.
The Turkish press reported at the weekend that central bank governor Gazi Ercel had submitted his resignation, and a similar report about treasury undersecretary Selcuk Demiralp followed on Monday.
The two bureaucrats are so far the only ones to go after an economic crisis that forced the government on Thursday to abandon a pegged foreign exchange rate, the backbone of a three-year IMF-backed economic program, effectively allowing the depreciation of the Turkish lira.
Despite mounting calls for a cabinet reshuffle and a resignation of the government, Ecevit declared Saturday that a change in the cabinet "is out of the question."
The political leadership is widely blamed for the turmoil, which erupted out of fears of political instability when Ecevit and President Ahmet Necdet Sezer clashed publicly last week over the government's resolve to fight corruption. — (AFP, Ankara)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)