No EC can hold credible polls with AL in power: Fakhrul

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Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir. — File photo.

The secretary general of the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party, Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, said on Sunday that joining talks with the current election commission was pointless as no commission could organize a neutral and credible election if the Awami League remained in power.

“Our experience in the last two elections is that if the Awami League remains in power, no commission can organize a credible and impartial election,” he said.

Speaking to reporters at the BNP chairman’s office in Gulshan, Fakhrul said that after boycotting the 2014 elections, they took part in the 2018 elections based on the prime minister’s promises to hold acceptable elections.

“But the ballot papers were seen to have been stuffed the day before Election Day. Considering these things, how do you (journalists) expect BNP to participate in a dialogue with the Electoral Commission? What will EC do? They have no power to do anything,” he said.

Fakhrul said whether or not the election is fair and acceptable depends on the nature of the government at the time of the election. “We have already seen that the elections would not be fair if Sheikh Hasina remained Prime Minister. So what will happen whether or not we join the EC talks? »

The BNP leader’s comments came as the EC began talks with registered political parties on Sunday morning to discuss issues relating to the 12th general election.

Fakhrul said the people do not want to see any elections under the Election Commission or under the current government.

‘That is why we do not comment on any EVM dialogue, discussion or question from this committee. Because we don’t believe there can be a fair election under the current Election Commission. If there is no change of government and if an impartial government does not come, there will be no elections in this country,” he said.

The BNP leader said the country’s main crisis is that there is no democracy here. “Election is the first door of democracy. But Bangladesh’s electoral system has been completely destroyed by the Awami League.’

He said four credible national elections were held in the country under the caretaker governments but the Awami League overruled the system only to cling to power forever by holding polls under their leadership.

The BNP leader said it was a fact that national elections were being held under partisan rule in many countries with strong democratic institutions and a long history of democracy.

“But our political culture is that one political party doesn’t trust another in our country. The Awami League itself has proven in previous polls that there can be no acceptable election under a partisan government. They even forcibly rigged local elections.

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