Controversies surrounding Turkey’s sovereign wealth fund have only grown since its creation four years ago amid swirling questions about its jumbled legal status, dubious purposes and exemption from public auditing.

The fund — created hastily in 2016 — was back in the spotlight in the first days of 2021 as 75 million liras (some $10 million) in prizes from the New Year’s Eve lottery, won by unsold tickets, were transferred to the fund, which holds the license rights of the national lottery. The transfer triggered a social media campaign, backed by celebrities and opposition leaders, urging Ankara to use the money for the ultra-expensive treatment of infants with a deadly neuromuscular disease. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who chairs the fund, reacted angrily, slamming the campaign as “immoral” for portraying the government’s health care measures as insufficient.

Written by Mustafa Sönmez