The legislative power of the Turkish Republic is the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA), which performs its function on behalf of the Turkish Nation.

The TGNA was first empowered to exercise legislative power in Ankara on April 23, 1920, by Mustafa Kemal. The total number of the members in TGNA is 550. The duties of the TGNA include enacting and amending laws, monitoring the actions of the Cabinet and Ministers, debating the budget, ratifying international agreements and declaring a war.

Anybody above the age of 30, who has minimum primary school education and who has security clearance can be elected as a deputy. The deputies represent not only the regions in which they were elected but the whole Nation. Elections are held every 4 years. According to the Constitution, all Turkish citizens over 18 years of age have the right to vote in elections and to take part in referendums. One third of the Assembly is enough to hold a session. The decisions are taken by an absolute majority vote of those present.


The President is the Head of State and represents the unity of the Turkish Nation. He oversees the workings of the Constitution and ensures that the departments of the state function harmoniously. He is elected by people for a period of five years for maximum two terms. His duties include calling the parliament to session, publishing laws, returning laws to parliament for reconsideration, deciding upon renewal of parliamentary elections, appointing the Prime Minister or accepting his resignation.


The Cabinet which is politically responsible to the Legislature is composed of the Prime Minister and the ministers. After the general elections, the leader of the party winning the majority is appointed as the Prime minister by the President. The ministers are selected by the Prime Minister but again appointed by the President.

The government is formed of the following ministries:

Ministry for EU Affairs
Ministry of Agriculture and Village Affairs
Ministry of Culture and Tourism
Ministry of Development
Ministry of Economy
Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources
Ministry of Environment and Urban Planning
Ministry of Family and Social Policies
Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Forest and Water Management
Ministry of Health
Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology
Ministry of Interior
Ministry of Justice
Ministry of Labour and Social Security
Ministry of National Defence
Ministry of National Education
Ministry of Public Works and Settlement
Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications
Ministry of Youth and Sports


The local administration system was established to meet the common needs of the people living in a specific region and is managed by bodies elected by those people.

The three types of local administration operating in Turkey are the municipalities, provincial local governments, and the villages.

a)The Municipalities

All municipalities are public corporate entities. Municipal organizations must be set up in all provincial and district centers. Besides carrying out duties related to health and social assistance, public works, education, agriculture, the economy and the well-being of its citizens, municipalities are required to take the necessary measures to meet all civic needs. These include municipal services including law enforcement, collection of municipal taxes, duties, fees, and domestic refuge. They also provide drinking water, gas, electricity and public transport facilities.

The Mayor is the chief executive and representative of the municipality and is elected for a term of five years.

b)Provincial Local Governments

The functions of the provincial local government organizations can be grouped as follows:

  • Health and social insurance
  • Public works
  • Culture and Education
  • Agriculture and animal husbandry
  • Economic and Commercial functions.

The governor, the representative of the central administration, is also the head of the provincial local government and its chief executive. The governor usually acts in line with the decisions made by the provincial general assembly.

c)The Villages

A village is formed by people living in scattered or closely packed houses with their yards, gardens and land, together with their common property such as a mosque, school or pasture.

A village administration is formed in villages where at least 150 people live. This administration is a corporate entity.

The basic body in the village administration is the Village Assembly composed of villagers over the age of 21. This assembly elects the village headman for a term of five years. The headman represents the central administration and supervises the planning and operation of village projects and services.