Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has once again said that her country's upcoming general election will be free and fair.
She made it clear after UK Foreign Minister James Cleverly during a meeting with her on Saturday (May 06, 2023) said that Britain wants to see a fair national election in Bangladesh in the coming days.
Bangladesh is likely to hold the next general election either end this year or early next year.
Cleverly called on Hasina at the Claridge Hotel where the visiting prime minister is staying on her official UK visit.
Hasina urged cooperation from all to make the next polls free and fair, according to Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen who briefed the media after the meeting.
“We want a fair election to be held. My party has always maintained democracy in the country. We have given the country’s democracy a strong footing,” she said.
The PM further said that her government is committed to holding a fair election which requires participation of all.
"I want cooperation from all to hold a fair election,” Hasina said.
She stated that the AL government had done everything required to hold a fair election. She mentioned introduction of a voter list with photographs of voters and making ballot boxes transparent so that none can manipulate the vote.
“We have created a strong state of democracy in Bangladesh," she said.
On the contrary the BNP during its rule had prepared a voter list with 1.23 crore fake voters for rigging votes, she said.
“We have made the Election Commission (EC) as independent and powerful enough alongside bringing institutional frameworks to hold a fair election,” she said.
The Prime Minister said they believe in Westminster like democracy following which Bangladesh has introduced a question-answer session in the Parliament.
During the talks, several bilateral issues like climate change, trade and commerce alongside the Rohingyas came up prominently, Momen said.
The UK foreign minister highly praised the humanitarian role of Bangladesh premier in sheltering a huge number of Rohingyas in Bangladesh.
“Britain will remain beside Bangladesh for quick repatriation of Rohingyas,” Cleverly said.
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Momen said the British government introduced a resolution before the UN Security Council on the Rohingya issue and played an effective role for its adoption.
Cleverly also expressed his gratitude towards Bangladesh premier for joining the coronation of King Charles III.