The full committees of all the affiliated organisations of Bangladesh Awami League, except the Juba League, have been announced.
The committees of Krishak League, Swechchhasebak League, Matsyajibi League and Mahila Sramik League were announced on Monday night. On Sunday night, the full committee of the National Workers League was announced.
The national conference of these organisations was held in November last year.
Party secretary called the presidents and general secretaries of the organisations and handed over the final list of approved full committees at the Awami League president's political office in Dhanmondi
In a letter with the list signed by the party's General Secretary Obaidul Quader, the presidents and general secretaries of the organisations were asked to take necessary steps.
The published list revealed that many from the previous committees got positions in the new full committees.
Former Chhatra League leaders have also been kept in the committees along with several controversial leaders.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Tuesday alleged that the current Election Commission (EC) has been working as an 'associate organisation' of the government and the ruling party for implementing their agenda.
“The recently held polls have proved once again that fair and credible elections cannot take place under the current Election Commission as it is fully working on implementing the agenda of the government and Awami League like an associate body of them,” he said.
The BNP leader made the remarks while exchanging views with journalists at his local residence.
Fakhrul said Awami League has initiated a process of destroying the country’s electoral system by holding a lopsided national election in 2014 where 154 MPs elected uncontested.
“This process has now been intensified by completely destroying the electoral system of Bangladesh. There’s now almost no voter turnout at voting centers as voters lost their interest in voting, including that of local body polls. The Election Commission and the government are responsible for it,” he observed.
The BNP leader said nine upazilas and 42 union parishads went to elections on Tuesday, but the voting was held everywhere in a similar fashion amid various irregularities without the presence of voters. “The bye-elections to in Dhaka’s Jatrabari, Naogaon-6 and Pabna-4 were also held in the same manner.”
He said the Election Commission prepares results as per their wish in every election as voters do not go to polling stations to cast their votes. “This has now become the country’s election system.”
Fakhrul said their party has been participating in the elections amid such a situation as it believes the change in power can happen only through balloting. “As a liberal democratic party, we’re joining the polls though there’s no election atmosphere in the country.”
Though 10 percent voter turnout was officially shown in Dhaka-5 polls on Saturday, he said it was actually less than five percent. “Interestingly, the Chief Election Commissioner said the election was free and fair. “It’s nothing, but a farce.”
The BNP leader said a credible election will not be held in the country until an election-time neutral government is installed and the Election Commission is not reconstituted with impartial persons.
Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader has said the BNP leadership should resign for its failure to forge any movement or win elections in the last 12 years before demanding resignation of the government.
He said this while briefing reporters at his official residence on Tuesday.
"In Bangladesh's history, people have never seen such a failed opposition," he said.
Citing global social unrest, domestic violence, violence against women during the Corona pandemic, Quader said the Guardian reported that 55,000 women were raped in the UK in the last one year.
He said the government in Bangladesh has taken a very strict stance against violence against women, including rape, and amended the relevant law to ensure the highest punishment for rapists.
BNP has been demanding free and fair elections time to time irrelevantly and unreasonably, he said.
Obaidul Quader also said BNP has not been able to forge any movement as it is not getting any issue. "So, their demand for government's resignation is totally rubbish."
He said they are trying to make the elections controversial by keeping themselves away from all activities for not having agents in the by-polls, which is an old tactic of BNP.
He came up with the demand at a press conference at Dhaka Reporters’ Unity (DRU).
“A farce was staged in the name of by-polls to Dhaka-5 seat on October 17. No one of our polling agents was allowed to enter the polling station, and those who did it were driven out,” the Jatiya Party candidate said.
He said, “Government-backed terrorist gangs didn’t allow any of our agents to vote, let alone the general voters. They captured every voting centre with the backing of the government while the police administration didn’t take any action against them. The lives of all of our workers were in danger on that day.”
Asud said it has become impossible for any civilised and decent person to contest any election under the current situation of the country.
He also alleged that the repression on their party workers is still going on.
Mentioning that a fair and credible election is not possible under the current Election Commission (EC), the Jatiya Party candidate said he has already lodged written complaints with the Commission demanding cancellation of the election.
“I also registered complaints on various irregularities and obstruction through election campaign by government supporters during the election, but they (EC) didn't pay any heed to them. Instead, the EC said it didn't receive any complaint and claimed the election was fair. This is the greatest lie of all time.”
Earlier, BNP and its candidate Salahuddin Ahmed also demanded reelection to Dhaka-5 bringing similar allegations.
The voting in the by-polls to the Dhaka-5 and Naogaon-6 seats was held on Saturday amid various election irregularities and low-presence of voters.
Awami League-backed candidates unofficially elected in the by-polls as per the results announced by the returning officers concerned.
Also read: Polls in over 200 local bodies Tuesday
Jatiya Party Chairman GM Quader on Monday said Article 70 of the constitution has crippled the parliamentary government system.
“MPs can’t vote against the party's decision due to Article 70 and this is why a dictatorship or autocracy is established in parliament,” he said.
Quader, also the deputy opposition leader in parliament, said parliamentary democracy had been introduced in the country as per outlines of the three alliances in 1991 as his brother HM Ershad quit power.
“But in the name of establishing parliamentary democracy, the institutional dictatorship was established in the country by changing the presidential form of government system. As per the system, the head of the party that gets a majority in the election becomes the head of the government and whatever she says will happen. Because, if any MP speaks against the party will lose the MP post,” he observed.
GM Quader made the remarks while speaking at a joint meeting of Jatiya Sramik Party at Jatiya Party Chairman’s Banani Office.
According to Article 70, a person elected as a member of parliament (MP) in a national election in which he was nominated as a candidate by a political party shall vacate his/her seat if s/he a) resigns from that party or b) votes in parliament against that party, but shall not thereby be disqualified for subsequent election as a member of parliament.
GM Quader said Jatiya Party is now the most promising political force in Bangladesh as people have become fed up with both BNP and Awami League.
“It’s right that Awami League has carried out various development activities by staying in power for a long time. But they also hurt people with their different acts. The people of the country don’t remember development for a long time, but they remember the sufferings for a long time,” he observed.
Besides, the Jatiya Party chief said BNP has long been suffering from extreme leadership crisis, making its leaders and activists frustrated. “People are also disappointed with the BNP. In such a reality, Jatiya Party is the only political force of people's trust.”
He said the people of the country now want Jatiya Party to be stronger and return to power by getting a majority in the national election.
The Jatiya Party chairman said there was good governance and the rule of law in the country during the nine-year rule of HM Ershad.
“There’s no murder, rape, extortion, politicisation and tender manipulation in the country at that time. So, the only party that people trust is the Jatiya Party and people will join it in groups in the days to come.”