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İmamoğlu: We are all getting poorer day by day

The fourth factory of Istanbul Halk Ekmek (IHE), one of the subsidiaries of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (İBB), “Ahmet İsvan Halk Ekmek Fabrikası” was opened with a ceremony attended by CHP Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. “Today, we are together for the opening ceremony of our Ahmet İsvan Public Bread Factory, which is Turkey’s largest facility in its field.” İBB President Ekrem İmamoğlu said: “Yesterday, we had the pleasure of reopening our Basilica Cistern Museum, one of the unique treasures of Istanbul, to the visit of our people after the most comprehensive restoration work in history. At that opening we held in the evening, I also mentioned our marathon, which we started as of yesterday, called ‘150 Projects in 150 Days’, and groundbreaking. We are on the second day of the projects marathon I mentioned. We are a democratic, social justice and investor municipality.

“We have allocated 42 percent of our budget to investments”

The main purpose of our coming to public authorities is to produce services, to invest on investment. Since the first day, we have been working to improve the quality of life of 16 million people, activating the common mind and providing service. We focus on solving problems that have been neglected for years, without wasting a penny of this beloved nation, and take permanent steps to end the betrayal in this city. This is why we have allocated 42 percent of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s 2022 budget to investments. In other words, we have doubled our 2021 investment budget exactly this year. Rail systems, which have been neglected for a quarter of a century, take the lion’s share of our budget. That’s why we define our 2022 budget as an investment budget.

“We never forget our responsibility to stand by our people in their most difficult moment”

On the other hand, we never forget our responsibility to stand by our people in their most difficult moments. We have also increased the in-kind or cash aid in various items we provide to our citizens in need, approximately 5 times that of the previous periods. In other words, we use 9.4 percent of our expenses to support our citizens in need. I would like to share another figure with you without overwhelming more data. As Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, we make almost a quarter of the total investments of local governments in Turkey. As a result of these, our investments that will make life easier and add value to Istanbul are rising one after the other all over the city. As a result of this approach, we will open and lay the foundations of 150 projects that will add value to Istanbul in the next 150 days. Because we have a promise to this nation. We’re going to tire you out a little. We want to see you with us. I received a thank you phone call from the general manager of Halk Ekmek of the previous period, and I was very happy. He said he could not explain the importance of this facility to the management. He stated that he could not come because he could not find a ticket from Nevşehir. We thank him for thinking of this facility. We serve with the vision of a fair, green and creative Istanbul. It is our motto not to separate any of the 16 million citizens from the other, to be fair, and not to leave anyone behind. The subject of our ‘Fair Istanbul’ vision is people. Not everyone who voted for us, but everyone living in this country. This is why it is very important for us that hundreds of thousands of our children have free access to milk. Giving cash support and shopping aid to thousands of families, providing free education support to our university students, distributing tablets to our primary school children, always being by the side of the needy and the needy with our help boxes and newborn packages, serving the orphan, the orphan, the disabled, wholeheartedly, without expecting anything in return. All of this is our priority without incurring the feeling of a diet debt to them at no cost. Because for the last 3 years, social justice and social assistance in this city has been done on the basis of rights.

“Ahmet İsvan did not distinguish anyone living in this city”

At this point, I would like to commemorate our late Metropolitan Mayor Ahmet İsvan, who gave his name to the facility we opened today. Because his just, egalitarian administration and democratic personality are one of our biggest inspirations. The late president did not distinguish anyone living in this city. He provided services to the slum areas and equipped the city with playgrounds. He fought hard to give back the people’s lands to the people. In short, it exhibited an extremely strong example of ‘popular municipalism’. He also founded Halk Ekmek in 1977 so that the people of this city could eat bread at a cheaper price. But unfortunately this country did not treat this esteemed president well. After the 1980 coup, he was tried and imprisoned for being against the dictatorship and oppressive government. So, does anyone know the name of those who sent him to jail today? Of course not. But the name of Ahmet İsvan continues to live on in the works he added to Istanbul, in our factory that we opened here and in many other facilities. For this reason, we have accepted our Ahmet İsvan Public Bread Factory as one of the important milestones in our ‘150 Projects in 150 Days’ service marathon. When he was the Mayor of Beylikdüzü, we visited them in Yalova and kissed their hands. I live the memories of those moments proudly, I remember them with mercy.

“This wonderful country is no longer ruled by competent hands”

Unfortunately, we are experiencing a serious management crisis. This wonderful country is no longer ruled by competent hands. We are all getting poorer day by day Official food inflation in Turkey and Istanbul has risen to over 90 percent. Everything is expensive, especially our staple food. Those who govern us are not able to produce solutions, they ignore unemployment, hunger, misery, and turn their ears to the voice of the citizens. They are trying to cover their desperation by attacking us and the services we provide to Istanbul. So, do we fall into pessimism and despair in the face of this situation? Of course not. Those who look at me in Istanbul see that I am not pessimistic, I am not hopeless. We continue to provide services and provide effective solutions for this city, for 16 million people.

“We have invested 110 million Euros with the machinery in it”

The work that we are opening today is the fourth factory of Istanbul Halk Ekmek. Its construction was previously planned but only scheduled. For a long time, nail on nail has not been hammered. Only 1 percent of it was completed until we started working in 2019. Can you imagine? We made it ready for service in a short time. And happily, we are opening it to the service of 16 million Istanbulites today. Our factory has the distinction of being the largest facility in its field, that is, producing sourdough bread. We will offer approximately 1 million 500 pieces of bread per day to our people with healthy, modern and high quality production in our three lines within the factory. With our first line, we are adding 250 thousand additional capacity to the normal daily capacity of Istanbul Halk Ekmek. On the second production line in our factory, we produce one million packaged Mediterranean breads per day. In the third line, we produce nearly 200-250 thousand different weights and different types of toast bread, hamburger bread or round bread. Our primary goal is, of course, to meet the most basic bread needs of our low-income and needy families. In addition, we will ensure that Istanbulites have access to nutritious, healthy bread and bakery products. Our citizens who have health problems such as celiac and PKU and who eat gluten-free and low-protein can also benefit from these products. As I mentioned before, our Ahmet İsvan Bread Factory is an important part of our ‘150 Projects in 150 Days’ marathon. I would like to proudly repeat that we are this city; We are working to make it much more livable, happy and productive with its rail systems, green areas, advanced infrastructure, social housing, kindergartens and digital investments. We are strengthening Istanbul with investments. And by the end of the year, we will inaugurate or lay the groundwork for at least 150 projects

“When we come to 2023, we will increase gears”

When we come to 2023, we will increase gears. We will expand our services and projects by multiplying them. We will continue to show that this ancient city and beloved nation are not without a home. We will continue to be hope for the youth, children, mothers and orphans of this city. No matter how many obstacles are placed before us. No matter how strange inventions are made. We will not give up, we will not give up. We will continue to work for 16 million with greater determination. On this beautiful day, I would like to thank you for not leaving us alone at the opening of such a special facility. President, I would like to make many of my next openings with you. We want you to devote most of your time to Istanbul.” (ANKA)

Anton Kovačić Administrator

A professional writer by day, a tech-nerd by night, with a love for all things money.

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