A columnist at Doğan Media Group’s Posta daily, Hakan Çelenk had his contract reportedly cancelled by the newspaper management days after he sarcastically criticized government plans for presidential referendum.
“[Supposed that] I am an ill-intentioned president, defend the system against me. …I come into power and have corrupt ties. If someone attempts to discharge me, I would abolish the parliament if I am malicious,” Çelenk said during a news program at CNN Turk TV station on Jan. 22.
While his comments went viral on social media websites, Çelenk has written no column for Posta since then, leading rumors in media spheres that he was fired.
Turkey’s mainstream media holding Doğan is known to have bowed before the government pressure as several journalists and columnists have been dismissed in the recent past.
Turkish citizens will cast their votes for a constitutional reform package that introduces an executive presidency in the country on April, this year.