This week, we are a guest of CHP İzmir Deputy Atila Sertel and his wife Ziynet Sertel. Sertel couple met at the university. Ms. Ziynet says that she has been married to Atila Bey, whom she says “You are not my type” the first time she saw him, for 41 years. It is up to us to say ’41 times, maşallah’.
FAMILY The Assembly’s guests this week are CHP Izmir Deputy Atila Sertel and his wife Ziynet Sertel. The most amazing surprise of our interview is the 10-day twin grandchildren of Sertel couple Özgen Demir and Özgün Deniz. Atila Bey, a journalist deputy, has been in the Parliament since the November 2015 elections. Ziynet Hanim, who is a journalist like her husband, said, “I will give an interview for the first time. I’ve always been interviewed. “He didn’t know where to start.” We start our conversation without further excitement:
Let’s get to know you?
Ziynet Sertel: I was born in 1960 in Izmir Çamdibi. I graduated from Izmir Namık Kemal High School. I won the English Department of Buca Education Industry in 1977, while Atila was in the German department of Fikirtepe the same year. We both left the places we won that year and entered the Ege University Press Publishing School in 1978. So, I would find Atila at Ege University. I believe in the motif of destiny. If not, would two people unaware of each other meet in the same place, in the same class a year later?
When did you start your business life?
Ziynet Sertel: I started life as a worker. My family was doing well, but I did not want to receive money from my father. I both studied and read. On July 21 of 1977, I got a job at Tekel. I was a seasonal worker, I worked 5 summer. I think Atila also said, ‘Worker, this is weird girl. Let me take it. ‘(Laughs).
OFFER IN FIRST CLASS WEDDING IN SECOND CLASS
How did you meet?
Ziynet Sertel: We met at the university and got married. At the end of the first grade, Atila offered me to marry, and we got married at the end of the second grade. In the fourth grade, I was pregnant with my first child when I graduated. The first day we meet, I’m sitting in the classroom. The door opened, and a man with a red cheek and a James Bond bag entered. I looked at it and said, ‘Ayy, you are not my type,’ and I turned my head. Atila started to wander around me. Then I became my type. I caught a different aspect of Atila, it was my style. He has a very humorous personality. It is very funny, it competes with Cem Yılmaz. You tell a topic 10 times in 10 different ways, you laugh at them all. I was very impressed with this situation.
I CAN’T BUY YOU A FUR BUT MARRY ME
How did he trick you in college, how did he convince you to marry?
Ziynet Sertel: I had many suitors, but I did not want anyone. One day Atila came while I was at work; we are friends yet. We sat a little in the garden and said, “Let us go.” I got permission, we went to dinner. He said to me suddenly, “I can’t buy you fur, I can’t promise a rich life, I’m a civil servant, but marry me. At that time, Atila was a civil servant at the SSK. I did not want to live in a ‘fur coat’, but I started laughing. I thought he was joking with me. When I said ‘I am not kidding’ I was just stuck. I was 19, when they came to ask. There was a month when I was 20 years old when I got married.
A journey from journalism to politics. How was the policy entered?
Ziynet Sertel: I liked journalism more than Atila’s politics. In 1989, Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Mayor Yüksel Çakmur called. Atila was in Hürriyet that year. He thought they were going to be interviewed and took his bag and went. Yüksel Bey said he wanted to work with Atila. When I told me, my first word was ‘I want you to remain a journalist’. His first political work started like this, as the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Press and Public Relations Department Head. Now, I say, it is good that I entered politics.
TUTTU TUTİ FREQUENTLY LOOKED IN MY EYES
Atila Sertel: My first candidacy was at the age of 34 in the 1991 general elections, from the Socialist Democratic People’s Party (SHP). We lost the election while winning. Due to the 25% election threshold among the regions, I could not become a deputy with the SHP getting 23.8% of the votes. Motherland Party crossed the dam, made 4-0. We lost the election at 5:30 in the morning. He turned to Ziynet and said, ‘Life begins again. I reset and we will fight again, ‘I said. He held my hand tightly and looked into my eyes. I struggled for 25 years as a deputy. My wife was always behind this struggle.
When I saw the ring, I said ‘Ok, it’s mine’
Let’s listen to the meeting story from you, Atila Bey …
Atila Sertel: There were three girls in the classroom, I had Ziynet in mind. The traits of Ziynet were different. You choose not only beauty, but the person you believe will share life and be happy in the end. For a while I saw Ziynet’s finger. There was a ring. It turns out that it was a stone ring, but turned upside down. Since the stone did not appear, I thought it was a wedding ring. Hoped my heart. I said, “Oh, I think it’s mine.” When I realized that there were no wedding rings, I immediately proposed to get married. The trappings both received the diploma and me. Koskoca 41 years, 41 times, thank you.
The Sertel couple became delirious when they learned that they would have twin grandchildren. “Grandchild bonus … Atlas was the first pupil of all of us now we have three grandchildren,” says Ziynet Hanım, who loves her grandchild.
FIRST FAMILY POSITION WITH 10 DAILY TWINS
The greatest happiness of the SERTEL Family nowadays is their 10-day twin grandchildren. Özgen Demir and Özgün Deniz go to the garden for the first time for their first family photo in the arms of their parents. Mihran Hanım, the mother of their bride, also joins us. Atila Atlas, the first eye pain of grandfather and grandmother, is also with us.
The threat of ‘buying a dog if we do not do it’
SERTEL couple embraced their second baby after 14 years. Ziynet Hanım never looked after the second child warmly when she said the difficulties of working life and the problems of ‘Who will look after’. On the other hand, Atila Bey threatened to dream of the second baby, which had started while the first child was laboring, Atila Bey as a last resort with the words “We either make children or bring a dog home”. “We got Mustafa by dog blackmail,” says Atila Sertel.
‘WHEN WE WERE MARRIED IN THE PRISON FOR 10 MONTHS’
Prison days …
Ziynet Sertel: We were married for 10 months. When Atila entered prison from politics, it was September 12. We were in the third grade at the university. He stayed inside for 6 months and 3 days. They took me for 10 days. When I got out, I couldn’t even be happy, he was halfway inside. I was never cut in my life without eating. It was the first time that my mother forced me to eat at that time.
Have you ever thought of being in politics?
Ziynet Sertel: Sometimes there are those who think that I am a former deputy. I say, “I was a minister, I left the deputy to my husband.” I am always with Atila, but not in politics.