The next general election in Bangladesh will be held by January 29, 2024 with the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) in 150 constituencies out of 300, according to a roadmap published by the Election Commission.
“Seventeen out of 29 parties who participated in the recent dialogue gave positive opinion on the use of EVMs while 12 rejected use of EVM. The Election Commission thinks that it will not be rational to use EVMs as most of the political parties want. Use of EVMs in 150 constituencies will be rational for balancing the opinions of all parties,” Election Commissioner Md Ahsan Habib, gave the keynote speech as chief guest in the absence of the CEC.
EC also said the election has to be held by January 24, 2024 as per the constitution.
Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal could not attend the event due to illness, but four other Election Commissioners along with senior EC officials were present.
The Election Commission (EC) published the roadmap for the upcoming 12th National Assembly elections.
This was revealed at a function held at the auditorium of the Election Commission building on Wednesday.
The action plan mentions the challenges to holding fair elections, what the EC should do to deal with them, review the activities of the parties, increasing the use of election technology etc.
The EC said that no one has been able to provide proof of EVM rigging in all the elections that have taken place so far.
Setting parliamentary constituency boundaries
The roadmap says that a new policy will be made in January 2023 to redefine the boundaries of the parliamentary seats. On the basis of which the Geographical Information System will be discussed with the relevant institutions and experts, and the draft of the constituencies will be published in March 2023. The revised delimitation of 300 constituencies will be gazetted in June after objections to the draft were settled in May.
The action plan informs that updates are currently in progress. The updated list will be released on March 2, 2023. With the announcement of the parliamentary election schedule, the voter list of 300 constituencies will be published.
EC plans to set up 42,000 polling stations. In this case, the work will be undertaken in June 2023. The draft will be published in July, and the objections will be settled on the draft in August. After that, Election Commission will publish the gazette of the polling station 25 days before the polling.
Inspection of parties
The process of reviewing the activities of the registered parties will begin this September. In this case, after reviewing all the information, the Election Commission will decide which party's registration will be maintained in May 2023. The final list of registered parties will be published in June of the same year. Before this, registration of new parties will be announced in May.