Turkish mayor slammed for using public funds for ‘monstrous’ robot statue

Melih Gökçek, mayor of Turkish capital Ankara, is being sued for misuse of public funds after building a 20-foot statue of a robot in the city.

Respect the robot– Melih Gökçek, mayor of Ankara

The statue (pictured), which sort of resembles a "Transformer" but can’t be called one due to copyright issues, was erected at an intersection to promote a new amusement park that the mayor has dubbed a "prestige project". 

The not-a-Transformer is located just a few kilometres from Turkish President Recep Tayyip ErdoÄŸan’s new palace. 

Turkey’s Chamber of Architects and Engineers (TMMOB) originally thought the statue was an April fool’s joke but have since labelled it a "monstrosity" and a waste of taxpayer’s money. 

Tezcan Karakuş Candan, head of the Ankara branch of TMMOB, said: "We must know how much each of these robots cost. We cannot accept the building of such a freak statue with our taxes." 

Twenty similar statues will be included in the park when it is completed.

Gökçek is alleged to have said "respect the robot" when questioned by the TMMOB over funding. 

In other robo-news, giant solar-powered bots with rotating chests, surveillance cameras and flashing lights are regulating traffic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, robot pedestrians will test the aptitude of driverless cars in Michigan and a "robotel" staffed by androids is set to open in Japan this July. 

Image: Ankara’s 20ft robot (Twitter)

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