President Abdul Hamid on Thursday received the names of 10 individuals recommended by the search committee to be appointed in the next five-member Election Commission at Bangabhaban. The president will now review the names to pick five from among them for appointment as chief election commissioner and four other commissioners, Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam said. Two names have been proposed for each post. Also read: Disclose 10 final names: Shujan to Search Committee He said the chosen names will soon be published through gazette notification.
BNP Secretery General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday alleged that the government is deceiving people in the name of formation of the Election Commission (EC) through the search committee. “The people of Bangladesh have been deprived of their minimum rights to vote. The new EC is being formed. We've earlier said this EC won’t' be useful unless there's no neutral and non-party polls-time government," he said. Speaking at a book lunching programme at the Jatiya Press Club, the BNP leader said the government wants to consolidate its power to restore one-party Baksal rule. “They're going to form the Election Commission through the search deceiving people to hold national elections like those in 2014 and 2018. The Universal Academy arranged the programmer to unveil the cover of the book titled “Smriti Album" (Memory Album) on the life and work of BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain. Also read: Govt 'indulging again' in acts of enforced disappearance, abduction: BNP Referring to newspaper reports, Fakhrul said an official at the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has been removed as he identified some corrupt people. “But he was removed as those people (corrupt ones) have accused him of being corrupt.” He alleged that the ACC official was removed without conducting any fair investigation into the allegations brought against him. “Corruption has engulfed the country with the government's backing." The BNP leader also said the relatives of the Education Minister plundered around Tk 300 crore in the name of land acquisition for a university in Chandpur. “I’ve read in the newspaper that per km construction cost of the road from Dhaka Airport to Tonggi was shown Tk 213 crore which is unprecedented in the world. “Widespread corruption is now everywhere. Corruption is now spreading like cancer,” he observed. Also read: ‘Awami private committee’ formed in search committee’s name: BNP Fakhrul bemoaned that even the vice-chancellors of different universities are indulging in corruption. “Those working in the health ministry are involved in corruption. There’s no place and sector, including the education one, where there's no corruption." He called upon all to get united to get rid of such an appalling situation in the country.
Shushaner Janniya Nagorik (Shujan) on Thursday asked the Search Committee constituted for the appointment of Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners to disclose the list of the 10 final names three days before its submission to the President. It also suggested the Search Committee to disclose who actually proposed which names for the posts of CEC and election commissioners for the sake of transparency Shujan Secretary Dr Badiul Alam Majumder placed the suggestions at an online press conference, said a press release. Also read: Next Election Commission: 322 names proposed to search committee published “The search committee needs to reveal its modus operandi immediately before people for the sake of maintaining its absolute transparency and neutrality,” he said. Dr Majumder, in his written statement, said transparency cannot be ensured if incomplete information is revealed or information was concealed. “The Search Committee needs to disclose the proposers – individuals, political parties and professional bodies—beside the names of initially suggested 322 people (exact 315 names). And it needs to prepare and publish a list of 20-30 persons, including one-third women from the primary list,” he said. Then the Search Committee should prepare the final list of 10 people, including a report, and publish the list and report the people three days before these are sent to the President, said the Shujan Secretary. Also read: Search committee asks political parties to suggest names for CEC, ECs Shujan President M Hafizuddin Khan, its members Dr Shahdeen Malik, Syeda Rizwana Hasan, Dr Shahnaz Huda and Robaet Ferdous, among others, spoke at the conference.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Wednesday described the activities of the search committee as a 'joke', and said it is 'meaningless' to send names to the search panel for the formation of the Election Commission. “There's nothing but a joke in its (search committee's) activities. The sole purpose of it is to confuse people and mislead them. It’s completely an eyewash," he said. Read: Momen accuses BNP of destroying caretaker government system for lust of power Speaking at a press conference at BNP Chairperson's Gulshan office, Fakhrul also said it was proved through the national elections in 2014 and 2018, and the local government polls that a credible election is not possible under the Awami League government. "So, BNP thinks sending names to the search committee and forming the Election Commission are completely pointless," he said. The BNP leader said the new Election Commission will be formed like the last two ones through the search committee giving the ruling party a scope to control the elections in the same style as it did in the past. "BNP thinks a neutral, fair and acceptable election is not possible under any circumstances under the illegitimate Awami League government which has been in power without peopel's mandate," he observed. Fakhrul said their party thinks the transfer of power to a neutral government for holding an inclusive and acceptable election through an impartial election commission and thus establishing a representative parliament and government is the only way to overcome the current crisis in the country. On February 5, a six-member search committee was formed under the "Appointments of the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners Act-2022". The search committee will propose 10 names to the President for appointing the new CEC and the Election Commissioners. Referring to a liked telephonic conversation between Law minister Anisul Huq and the Prime Minster's adviser Salman F Rahman about government projects, Fakhrul said, “As the Law Minister has acknowledged the authenticity of the conversation, it's essential to unveil the truth through a fair and impartial investigation." Read:Search committee working to form another 'subservient' EC: BNP The BNP leader urged the Anti-Corruption Commission to conduct an impartial inquiry and take effective action in this regard. He said their party standing committee at a meeting expressed deep concern over the growing prices of essential commodities like rice, pulses, oil and the gradual increase in the prices of fuel oil, gas and water. "The middle-class, lower-income people and workers are going through serious ordeals due to the hike in essential prices and the tariffs of utility services." He demanded the government take immediate steps to reduce the prices of essential commodities and stop the move to raise the tariffs of water, gas and oil.
Cabinet Division on Monday published 322 names that were suggested for the next Election Commission. The names were suggested to the president's search committee by political parties, professional bodies, eminent citizens and individuals. Former bureaucrats, retired judges and retired army officers dominated the list of 322 individuals. READ: Gazette published fixing eligibility and ineligibility criteria for CEC, election commissioners Academics, lawyers, retired police officers and journalists are among the professionals to make the list. The full list can be accessed online at: https://cabinet.gov.bd/sites/default/files/files/cabinet.portal.gov.bd/notices/f1b0963f_4882_4020_b479_fb9d83ef7823/List.pdf A six-member search committee, led by Appellate Division Justice Obaidul Hasan, was formed to suggest the names of the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners. A gazette in this regard was issued on February 5. The other members of the committee are High Court Division Justice SM Kuddus Zaman, the Comptroller and Auditor General of Bangladesh Md Muslim Chowdhury, Chairman of the Public Service Commission Md Sohrab Hossain, former election commissioner Muhammad Sohul Hussain and noted writer Anwara Syed Haque. The committee will perform responsibility as per the Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners Bill 2022. On January 27, parliament passed the “Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners Bill-2022". Though the Constitution suggests the appointment of the CEC and other election commissioners under a law, the law was not formulated in the past. READ: BNP is opposing election commission law to embarrass the govt: Hanif Article 118 (1) of the Constitution states, “There shall be an Election Commission for Bangladesh consisting of 1[the Chief Election Commissioner and not more than four Election Commissioners] and the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners (if any) shall, subject to the provisions of any law made in that behalf, be made by the President.” The Cabinet Division is providing secretarial support to the search committee.
BNP senior leader Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain on Friday alleged that the search committee has been formed as part of a government 'drama' to constitute a subservient Election Commission to hang onto power through ‘vote robbery’ again. "The search committee will be loyal to the government now in power. The names of those to be given by Sheikh Hasina or the government to this committee will be the Election Commissioners," he said. Read: People to turn down search committee’s recommendations: BNP Speaking at a discussion, the BNP leader also said their party thinks it makes no sense to take part in the Election Commission formation process under the current search committee. "So, this search committee is a drama of the government to stay in power by resorting to vote robbery in its old style," he observed. National People's Party (NPP) arranged the programme at the Jatiya Press Club demanding that the next national election be held under a non-partisan and neutral government. Mosharraf, a BNP standing committee member, said their party and alliance partners have decided not to join the national election under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as the last two elections under her were not fair and credible. He urged the government to quit and take steps for holding the next election under a non-party neutral administration to ensure people’s voting rights. "We would like to say the country's people are observing what you’re doing. Enough is enough. Not only the people of Bangladesh, but also the international community is also also saying enough is enough. The current situation can't be allowed to continue," the BNP leader said. He warned that thier party will be forced to take to the streets together with people if the current 'autocratic' regime dose not step down paving a way for an acceptable election under a neutral polls-time government. Read:Search committee asks political parties to suggest names for CEC, ECs "We're trying to forge a national unity. Inshallah we'll force this government to quit through a simultaneous movement. Everyone get ready for that movement," Mosharraf said. He regretted that there is no progress in the sensational murder case of journalist couple Sagar-Runi though 10 years have elapsed. "Sagar and Runi must have known some secret news of the government for which they were killed on that day. It's unfortunate that even the investigation report has not been placed in the case over the last 10 years, let alone the trial," the BNP leader said.
BNP on Sunday alleged that the government has formed a ‘private’ Awami body in the name of a search committee. “We previously said only those who wear the ‘Mujib Coat’ being inspired by the spirit of Awami Baksal would be there in the search committee…the newly formed search committee is the absolute reflection of that assumption,” said BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi. Speaking at a press conference at BNP’s Nayapaltan central office, he also said, "I think it’s justified to call it an ‘Awami private committee, not a search committee. This committee and those who will be found out by them for the Election Commission are all the passengers of the same boat. They’re birds of a feather.” The BNP leader also said all the names that would be proposed by the search committee would be members of the Awami family. Also read: ‘It’s like Baksal one’, BNP about EC law Rizvi said the intended goal of the search committee will be finding out the tested and genuine Awami family members to hold another ‘stage-managed’ election as per a government blueprint. On Saturday, a six-member search committee, led by Appellate Division Justice Obaidul Hassan, was formed to suggest the names of the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners. The other members of the committee are High Court Division Justice SM Kuddus Zaman, the Comptroller and Auditor General of Bangladesh Md Muslim Chowdhury, Chairman of the Public Service Commission Md Sohrab Hossain, former election commissioner Muhammad Sohul Hussain and noted writer Anwara Syed Haque. The tenure of the incumbent Commission, led by CEC KM Nurul Huda, will expire on February 14. Rizvi narrated how the search committee members have links with Awami League. “Obaidul Hassan, the current head of the search committee, was a member of the previous two search committees and he belongs to a tested Awami League family. He was also an Awami League MP candidate. He was a big leader of the Baksal Chhatra League,” he said. The BNP leader said Sohul Hussain, an expert in election engineering, has become a member of the search committee. “He bought the nomination form of Awami League in 2018 to be a candidate of the party in Sylhet-1 seat.” Also read: BNP sold out the War of Liberation sharing power with anti-independence forces: Quader He said another search committee member and High Court Division Justice SM Kuddus Zaman is the son of Rajbari’s late Awami League leader Hamiz Uddin Sheik. “His brother is an important leader of the local Awami League. Another member Prof Anwara Syed Haque is known as a blind Awami Leaguer. She is the wife of late poet Syed Shamsul Haque, a dedicated supporter of the Awami League. She served the Pakistan Air Force Medical Center throughout the war of independence. They’re experts in Hasina-style election engineering.” Rizvi said neither the country’s people nor BNP has any interest in the search committee or in the Election Commission. “People believe that a fair election is not possible without a non-partisan and neutral government.” He said a polls-time neutral government must be formed to hold the next general election in a credible manner. “Once the polls-time impartial government is formed, it will constitute a neutral Election Commission…people have turned down the Awami private committee in the name of the search committee with hatred.” The BNP leader said the Election Commission to be nominated by the search committee will be loyal to the government. “So, a mockery with people is going on in the name of formation of the Election Commission through the search committee.” He urged the government to quit and take steps for holding the next polls under an election-time neutral government to protect the country from a civil war.
BNP on Saturday said the formation of the six-member search committee for the reconstitution of the next Election Commission will be a ''meaningless exercise'' without having a polls-time neutral government in place. “This search committee has no value. It’s only a pointless exercise,” said BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir. Talking to UNB over phone, the BNP leader said their party has no interest in the search committee. "There’s nothing new to say about this matter. We think this committee has been formed as part of their (govt’s) evil design to deceive people again,” Fakhrul observed. He said people are neither interested in the search committee nor in the Election Commission under the current government. "A polls-time government, not the Election Commission, is important to people. It has been proved repeatedly that a neutral and credible election is not possible under the current government. People think first a polls-time government must be installed to ensure a credible election. So, the Election Commission is not an issue now,” the BNP leader said. Once the polls-time impartial government is formed, Fakhrul said a neutral Election Commission can also be constituted by that administration to hold an acceptable election. Asked whether their party will come up with any formal reaction to the search committee, he replied in the negative, saying, “We don’t have any interest in the matter.” Earlier in the day, a six-member search committee, led by Appellate Division Justice Obaidul Hasan, was formed to suggest the names of the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners. Read: BNP sold out the War of Liberation sharing power with anti-independence forces: Quader A gazette in this regard was issued by the Cabinet division. The tenure of the incumbent commission, led by CEC KM Nurul Huda, will expire on February 14. Meanwhile, BNP standing committee member Iqbal Hasan Mahmud Tuku said the search committee is not a subject for their party to talk about. "We’re not interested in it." Talking to reporters at BNP Chairperson’s Gulshan office, he also said their party’s main focus is on the polls-time neutral government. Replying to a question, the BNP leader said he thinks the search committee is not a neutral one. “The position of our party is very clear. We think that no election can be fair under this government. We won’t go to the election if the current regime stays in power during the voting. We’re least bothered about the search committee and the Election Commission under the current government,” he observed. Tuku said the next election will be held in a fair and credible manner if it is held under a neutral government. “We want a polls-time administration under which people will be able to exercise their voting rights. An interim government like that of 1991, 1996 and 2001 is necessary to hold a credible election and protect people’s voting rights.” He also said the Election Commission will be able to work neutrally if an impartial government is in place.
A six-member search committee, led by Appellate Division Justice Obaidul Hasan, has been formed to suggest the names of the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners. A gazette in this regard was issued on Saturday. The other members of the committee are High Court Division Justice SM Kuddus Zaman, the Comptroller and Auditor General of Bangladesh Md Muslim Chowdhury, Chairman of the Public Service Commission Md Sohrab Hossain, former election commissioner Muhammad Sohul Hussain and noted writer Anwara Syed Haque. The committee will perform responsibility as per the Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners Bill 2022. On January 27, parliament passed the “Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners Bill-2022". READ: Bangladesh one step away to have a law on EC formation Though the Constitution suggests the appointment of the CEC and other election commissioners under a law, the law was not formulated in the past. Article 118 (1) of the Constitution states, “There shall be an Election Commission for Bangladesh consisting of 1[the Chief Election Commissioner and not more than four Election Commissioners] and the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners (if any) shall, subject to the provisions of any law made in that behalf, be made by the President.” READ: Report on EC formation Bill placed in parliament The tenure of the incumbent commission, led by CEC KM Nurul Huda, will expire on February 14.
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Tuesday said the process of constituting the Election Commission (EC) through a search committee is a deception with people. “We’ve the experience that the Election Commission through a search committee is formed solely with their (govt’s) people. Secondly, it’s nothing but a deception with people as they (govt) say the Commission is formed not by us, but by a search committee,” he said. Talking to reporters at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office about the Prime Minister’s different comments on the next election, EC and BNP, the BNP leader said the current government earlier formed the EC completely with the people of its own choice and used them during the elections. Mentioning that the current EC, led by KM Nurul Huda, was also constituted through a search committee, Fakhrul said it absolutely played a ‘partisan role in favour of Awami League during the 11th parliamentary polls. He said elections will never be free, fair and acceptable under any election commission unless an election-time neutral government is there to oversee the polls. “So, an impartial election-time government is very urgent to hold a fair and credible election. The election won’t be fair even if it is held under the best Election Commission without the government’s cooperation. This is the main crisis,” Fakhrul observed. On Monday, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the new election commission will be constituted through a search committee to be formed by the President. “The President will form a search committee and the election commission will be constituted through this search committee,” she said, replying to a question at a press conference at her official residence Ganobhaban. BNP is people’s ‘choice’ As his attention was drawn to the PM’s comment as to why people will vote for BNP, Fakhrul said people have got fed up with the government’s ‘misrule’. “So, people will vote for BNP to get rid of them (AL). They’ve created such a situation in the country that there’s no security of people’s lives and livelihoods. There’s nothing but fear and terror all around.” He said Awami League had promised to give people rice at Tk 10 per kg, but it is now not positive to buy one kg rice at Tk 70. “They also assured the farmers of giving them free fertilizer, but the price of fertilizer is now skyrocketing. “People will vote for BNP because they want to cast their vote for those for whom they want to. They’ll also do it for the guarantee of getting jobs.” The BNP leader said many mills and factories have been closed due to the government’s failure to protect those by giving incentive packages during the Covid pandemic. “The informal sector has lost capital while employment in the sector has declined. Unfortunately, the government has taken the country to a place from where people now want to get back. They also want to be freed from the grasp of Awami League, Sheikh Hasina and this illegitimate government,” he observed. Recalling their party’s many successes in running the country and boosting economic progress, he said people will vote for BNP for peace and development. “The government used to say it has carried out huge development activities and made a lot of progress. If they’ve developed the country so much, then why are they not holding a fair election and sitting with political parties to solve the political crisis? I would like to ask them to hold a fair election under a caretaker government and then they will see whether people vote for them,” Fakhrul said. He said neither the nation nor the international community has confidence in the country’s current electoral system. No ‘alternative’ to movement Fakhrul warned their party together with people will surely take to the streets to realise their demand for holding the next polls under a caretaker government. "The people of this country must wage a movement. People had joined a movement for a caretaker government in the past and they’ll do it again,” he said. The BNP leader said their party has now only one demand for the restoration of a polls-time neutral government. “We want nothing else.” No more polls under AL He said their party will neither accept nor participate in the polls like 2014 and 2018 ones. “We would like to clearly say there would be no more elections under the Awami League government.” Fakhrul said the government should sit with the political parties to reach a consensus over the formation of a polls-time neutral government and an acceptable election commission for holding a meaningful election. “Otherwise, the election will become a farce. “