President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, on Saturday, that his country’s government raised the budget for social assistance from two billion liras annually (in 2002) to 69 billion liras (about 8 billion dollars) last year.
This came in a speech by Erdogan during his participation in the opening of a home for the elderly, and the announcement of the construction project of a “City of Social Services for the Elderly” in Istanbul.
Erdogan said, “The social assistance budget in Turkey was two billion liras annually when we took over the reins of power in the country (2002), and last year this figure reached 69 billion liras.”
He added that the value of social assistance provided in the country for the last 19 years amounted to 434 billion pounds.
He pointed out that his country’s government raised the proportion of social assistance from the national income from 0.38% to 1.37%.
He explained that the more Turkey grows, becomes stronger and richer, the higher the level of luxury it provides to its citizens.
Erdogan pointed out that his country’s government has increased the capacity of university housing over the past years, and it has reached about one million students.
He explained that the city of social services for the elderly is being built in the “Arnavutkoy” area in Istanbul on an area of 150,000 square meters, and it will accommodate the elderly and children under protection, with a capacity of 1,068 beds, in addition to providing it with a rehabilitation center, conference hall and places of worship.
He pointed out that the Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid II himself established the “House of the Aged” institution 126 years ago to accommodate everyone in need, especially the elderly and children.
He added that what distinguishes this ancient institution is that it embraced everyone without distinction between religion, language, race or gender.
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