Marmara Municipalities Union Took Over the Presidency of NALAS

Marmara Municipalities Union (MMU) took over the presidency of NALAS (Network of Associations of Local authorities of South-East Europe). MMU Deputy President and Mayor of Fatih Municipality M. Ergün Turan became the president of NALAS for period 2023-2024.

In line with the rotation presidency system of NALAS, M. Ergün Turan was inaugurated as the President of NALAS for 2023-2024 on behalf of MMU at the XVIII NALAS General Assembly that took place in Istanbul on 15 March 2023.

Solidarity support, prevention and policies related to natural disasters & earthquakes were at the forefront of the XVIII NALAS General Assembly. Mr. Bernd Vöhringer, the President of the Chamber of Local Authorities of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, stressed that “Municipalities and regions are key to answer crisis. They unfortunately had to show it many times in the past years. Involving them in structured crisis prevention and action plans at national and European plans is crucial. Let’s learn from past crisis management shortcomings and change our practices.”

Mathieu Mori, Secretary General of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities highlighted that “The topic of the General Assembly could not be more relevant in today’s context, and I am glad that it is taken up by NALAS, a long-standing partner of the Congress in upholding and strengthening local democracy, even in difficult times. The Congress will continue to engage with NALAS to promote more resilient and sustainable cities and regions.”  

The new President M. Ergün Turan emphasized that “I take this role of NALAS President convinced that the strength of the network comes from its members, which is you, the local government associations and your members local government authorities. Each and every city and municipality in our region can benefit from NALAS’ knowledge, experience and expertise. During my presidency, I will be working on expanding NALAS’ coverage, so that it includes the whole geographical South-East Europe. We start in 2023 with a new Strategy 2023-2027 which you will have the chance to formally adopt today. I commit myself to lead and support the implementation of the new strategy of NALAS even in such circumstances where NALAS has no longer under the umbrella of external institutional support, yet I believe it is perhaps stronger and most determined than ever to achieve its mission and objectives. Based on the new Strategy, NALAS will continue to keep its primary focus on empowering Local Government Associations in the Balkans but also continue to focus on sustainable development, digitalisation of public services, resilience of cities and the social inclusion which are all important priorities for all of us in this room. So, we have a lot of work ahead of us, but I am sure we are very successful when we work together and join forces.”

The President of MMU and the Mayor of Kocaeli Metropolitan Municipality Tahir Büyükakın congratulated M. Ergün Turan for his new post and thanked Goran Cvetanovic for his efforts and successful presidency. For the next period, The First Vice President of NALAS will be Mr. Dusan Raicevic, Mayor of Bar Municipality representing the Union of Municipalities of Montenegro; the Second Vice President will be Mr. Marko Filipovic Raicevic, Mayor of Rijeka representing the Association of Cities of Croatia; and the Third Vice President will be Mr. Emil Draghici, Mayor of Vulcana Bay, representing the Association of Communes of Romania.

About NALAS:

NALAS is a network of associations of local authorities of South-East Europe. The Network brings together 13 Associations which represent roughly 9000 local authorities, directly elected by more than 80 million citizens of this region. MMU is a member of NALAS since 2008. The mission of NALAS is to contribute to democracy, stability and prosperity in the region by actively supporting the development of strong local governments and the creation of smart, sustainable, inclusive, resilient communities in South-East Europe.

NALAS has a rotation Presidency system, with a President and three Vice-Presidents, who later become NALAS Presidents. The NALAS President for the term 2022-2023 was Goran Cvetanović, Mayor of the City of Leskovac in Serbia, on behalf of the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities of Serbia (SCTM). www.nalas.eu