Workers Party proposes to form Constitutional Council for EC

Workers Party of Bangladesh on Tuesday proposed to President Abdul Hamid to form a constitutional council for an independent Election Commission for conducting the next general election.

The constitutional council will comprise Prime Minister, Leader of Opposition, Speaker, Chief Justice and Attorney General. The council will propose the names to the President to appoint Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and Election Commissioners (EC). According to their advice, the President will then appoint the CEC and ECs.

There should be two women among the five-member Election Commission. The EC must ensure proper application of electoral laws.

Besides, the party requested the president to enact a law early next year.

These were the main points contained in the six-point proposals made by Workers Party during the visit of a seven-member delegation, led by its president Rashed Khan Menon, to the President at Bangabhaban.

Other members of Workers Party took part in the dialogue with the President were Anisur Rahman Mallick, Mahmudul Hasan Manik, Noor Ahmad Bakul, Quamrul Ahsan, Ali Ahmed Enamul Huq Imran and Nazrul Islam Hakkani.

The delegation thanked the President for initiating discussions with the political parties on the formation of a Election Commission as the current EC’s five-year term expires in February next year, according to Bangabhaban press wing.

The Workers Party leaders also suggested that the president exchange views with civil society representatives on the formation of the EC.

Welcoming the delegation of Workers Party at Bangabhaban, President Hamid said that politics is for the welfare of the people.

“If quality is not ensured in politics, it will be difficult for politicians to do politics in future. In this regard, the political parties have to build the right public opinion at the grassroots level,” he said.

On Monday Hamid discussed with Khilafat Majlis formation of an acceptable Election Commission (EC). Khilafat Majlis’ eight-member team was led by its Secretary-General Dr Ahmed Abdul Quader.

Earlier on Monday, a seven-member delegation of Bangladesh Tariqat Federation led by Syed Nazibul Bashar Maizbhandari also sat in dialogue with the president.

Opening the current round of dialogue with the Jatiya Party, the main opposition party in the Jatiya Sangsad, on December 20 President Hamid has so far met with the leaders of six political parties.

Bangladesh National Awami Party (NAP) joined the dialogue on Sunday.

On the other hand, Bangladesher Samajtantrik Dal (BSD), invited to Bangabhaban on Sunday last, declined the invite.

According to Bangabhaban press wing, the other parties invited for the dialogue are Bangladesh Nationalist Front (BNF) and Islami Oikya Jote on December 29, Gano Forum and Bikalpo Dhara on January 2, Ganotantri Party and Communist Party of Bangladesh on January 3.

The country has now 39 registered political parties, according to the EC website and only nine of them have representation in Parliament.

The nine parties are Bangladesh Awami League, Jatiya Party, Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), Bangladesh Workers Party, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal-Jasod, Bikalpadhara Bangladesh, Ganoforum, Bangladesh Tarikat Federation and Jatiya Party-JP.

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