Allowing electioneering by MPs would be unconstitutional: BNP

Published: April 20, 2018 18:42:38 | Updated: April 20, 2018 20:49:14

BNP leaders speaking at a discussion arranged by Bangladesh Jatiyatabadi Nagorik Dal at the Jatiya Press Club. Photo: UNB

BNP senior leader Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain has said it will be a violation of the constitution if the Election Commission (EC) allows MPs to carry out election campaigns in Khulna and Gazipur city polls billed for May 15.

"We've heard that the Election Commission can create a scope for the MPs to conduct election campaign (in city polls). We would like to say it will be the violation of the constitution, laws and the election code of conduct," he said.

Mosharraf came up with the comments while speaking at a discussion arranged by Bangladesh Jatiyatabadi Nagorik Dal at the Jatiya Press Club on Friday.

Earlier on Thursday, EC acting secretary Helaluddin Ahmed told reporters that the Commission is considering amending the electoral code of conduct positively to allow MPs to carry out election campaign in the city polls.

Protesting the move, Mosharraf urged the EC to act neutrally as an independent body and not to violate the rules and regulations.

Or else, he said, people will reach a decision that the current Commission is not capable of holding a neutral and credible national election.

He renewed their party's demand for deployment of army in the two city polls so that voters can exercise their right to franchise without fear.

About the 11th parliamentary polls, the BNP leader said it must be held under a neutral government with the deployment of army after dissolving parliament. "But Awami League won't want this. We must force the government to do this by uniting people."

Mosharraf also warned the government that it will not be able to hold a lopsided election in 2018 like the January-5, 2014 one. "People won't allow you to hold stage-managed polls."

He also demanded the government immediately release their chairperson Khaleda Zia from jail for creating a congenial atmosphere for the general election, reports UNB.

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