As the Galatasaray Club elections approached, a lawsuit was filed by the Governor’s office for the cancellation of the general meeting. The question is whether the electoral calendar will work… Former Galatasaray vice-president Rezan Epözdemir made a statement to Skorer on this subject. Here are Epözdemir’s answers to the questions…
Could you give brief information on the legal proceedings?
According to Article 32/1/b of the Law on Associations and Article 17 of the Regulations on Associations, the Provincial Directorate for Relations with Civil Society has the power to control the general meetings of the association because they are contrary to the law and the articles of association, and in this case, administrative fines may be imposed on the members of the board of directors. Again, although it is stipulated in Article 83 of the Turkish Civil Code that an action for annulment can only be brought by members, in Article 32/1/b of the Law on Associations, ” the court may decide to cancel the meetings of the general assembly held in violation of the provisions of the law and the statute”. According to 17/last paragraph of the Associations Regulations, with the regulations in the form “In the event of the elimination of shortcomings and errors or the detection of acts constituting the subject, the necessary legal actions are taken”. As the Directorate of Relations with Civil Society does not have a legal personality, it can be said that the governorates to which it is affiliated have the capacity to bring an action for annulment of the decision of the general assembly of the association. In fact, by the governorship of the 8th Civil Court of first instance in Istanbul, which resulted in an administrative expulsion: (1) Cancellation of the decisions taken at the meeting of the Financial General Assembly of March 26 (2) 24/9, 26/5 and 87/2 regarding the administrative discharge in the statutes of Galatasaray Sports Club Association An action for annulment has been filed against Galatasaray Sports Club with the request for the annulment of the statutes and (3) the annulment of the decision of the general meeting taken due to the administrative non-derogation.
What are the grounds for the motion to quash the lawsuit brought by the governor’s office?
I- It was reported that a total of 2449 people attended the general assembly, 2449 people were present on the list of participants and that according to Article 81 of the Turkish Civil Code, the resolutions of the general assembly general would be taken by an absolute majority of the members present at the meeting, that is to say that a minimum of 1225 people must cast a vote of release or release in total. However, following the vote of acquittal held in the General Assembly, the decision of administrative acquittal was taken with 801 votes; it therefore remained below 1225. “According to Article 81 of the Turkish Civil Code, such a decision can only be taken by an absolute majority.” Of course, this statement is also valid for the financial release, because the financial release decision was taken with 718 votes and again it falls below 1225. For these reasons, it is asserted that the decisions taken in the General Assembly are illegal.
II- It has been claimed that the General Assembly starting at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday and ending at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday is against the law and the statute. It has been shown that the continuation of the general assembly for 2 days is against Articles 77 and 74 of the Turkish Civil Code, and that a significant part of the participants of the general assembly could not vote because the assembly general was postponed to the following day.
III- It was specified that the 2022 budget of the association was submitted to the vote and rejected without discussion, contrary to the provisions of the statutes of the association, and the chairman of the board of the general assembly spoke during the vote. It has been declared that if the chairman of the board of the general meeting should not express an opinion in accordance with the statute, he has expressed an opinion contrary to the statute, thus affecting the vote, and this situation constitutes a violation of article 47 of the statute.
IV- The release is unique and the decisions of the Court of Cassation go in this direction, the distinction between financial release and administrative release is not legally called into question, there are clear decisions in this sense at the Court of Cassation, because release means acquittal, provisions for administrative release cannot be included in law, and financial release does not include administrative release. For this reason, it was demanded that sections 24/9, 26/5 and 87/22 of the regulations be illegal and canceled.
Will the opening of this trial prevent the Galatasaray Sports Club’s presidential election schedule from working? Will there be elections or not?
As part of this action brought by the Cabinet of the Governor, a precautionary measure was also requested concerning the suspension of the execution of the decision relating to the holding of an extraordinary general meeting in accordance with article 389 of the Code of Procedure civil. The request for an interim injunction from the governor’s office was rejected by the Istanbul 8th Civil Court of First Instance, and a legal remedy can be taken against this decision according to the last paragraph of Article 391 of the Civil Procedure Code. This request is first reviewed and finalized. In this context, the Istanbul Governor’s office first objected to the refusal of the interim injunction on April 11 and an appeal was filed; On April 12, the objection and appeal filed by the governor’s office against the dismissal of the interim injunction request was dropped. And the motion declaring that the request for appeal was terminated was filed.
Is this normal practice?
This is an extremely unusual practice in terms of established judicial practice. It is an extremely natural and normal situation for the claimant to request an interim order and to appeal to the court of appeal if this request is rejected. However, it is unusual in the light of established judicial practice that he immediately waives the request for appeal, that is to say that he waives the opposition against the decision to reject the provisional injunction.
Why do you think such a derogation could have been made?
It is not possible for me to make a solid assessment due to my lack of knowledge on this subject. However, due to feedback from the Galatasaray audience, such an arrangement may have been made to make the election calendar work fully and properly.
What will happen next?
Due to the renunciation of the request for appeal made by the prefecture against the refusal of the summary procedure, the action for annulment will continue, but the electoral calendar will continue to run since the request for summary procedure has been rejected. If a decision is made to cancel the financial general meeting following the trial, the 2021 financial general meeting will be held again in the coming period. In the final analysis; The cancellation case will be held separately and the Extraordinary Election General Meeting of the Galatasaray Sports Clubs Association on April 23-30 will be held on time, fully and duly, unless there is any other legal developments at that time. In this regard, the will of the people of Galatasaray, which is the conscience of Galatasaray, and the will of the general assembly will also be manifested. I would like to take this opportunity to wish success to the esteemed presidential candidates and esteemed board member candidates. Whoever deserves it wins, but Galatasaray wins.