TRNC parliament passes municipalities amendment law

The Municipalities Amendment Law aimed at reducing the number of municipalities in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was passed by parliament early Thursday morning.

Despite the protests staged in front of the parliament building by the municipalities opposed to the law, the amended bill was passed by a majority of votes at an extraordinary session which lasted until the early hours of Thursday morning.

Security around the parliament building was tight as police held back the demonstrating municipal workers who opposed the move.

Earlier in the day, garbage trucks and utility vehicles belonging to the various municipalities were deliberately parked along the main arteries, blocking access to the heart of the capital and causing traffic jams across Lefkoşa.

Nevertheless, despite the opposition, the bill was passed by the coalition government with a majority of the votes of the MPs attending the extraordinary session.

The amendment has now brought the number of municipalities down from 28 to 18.

However, current workers at the municipalities which will be merged with larger municipalities will retain their benefits and rights.

In addition to the merging of municipalities, the four villages of Kaplıca, Kilitkaya, Tuzluca and Kalecik have now been placed under the jurisdiction of the İskele Municipality.

The next local elections will be held on November 27, 2022.


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