29 Jan 2022, 09:44

Erdogan sacks controversial state statistics chief

ISTANBUL, Jan 29, 2022 (BSS/AFP) - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
has sacked the head of the state statistics agency, according to a decree
published Saturday, after annual inflation figures angered both the pro-
government and opposition camps.

   The dismissed state statistic agency chief, Sait Erdal Dincer, came under
fire after releasing data this month that put the annual inflation rate at a
19-year high of 36.1 percent.

   The opposition said the figure was underreported, claiming that the real
cost of living increases were at least twice as high.

   But Erdogan reportedly criticised the statistics agency in private for
publishing data that he felt overstated the scale of Turkey's economic

   Erdogan did not explain his decision to appoint Erhan Cetinkaya, who had
served as vice-chair of Turkey's banking regulator, as the new state
statistics chief.

   The Turkish leader also appointed a new justice minister, naming former
deputy prime minister Bekir Bozdag to replace veteran ruling party member
Abdulhamit Gul.

   "I have resigned from my duties at the ministry of justice, which I have
been serving since July 19, 2017," Gul wrote on Twitter.

   "I would like to express my gratitude... for accepting my request," he
added without explaining his decision.


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