BNP senior leader Moudud Ahmed on Sunday urged the Election Commission (EC) to stop Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina from going for a unilateral electioneering before the announcement of the schedule for the next general election.
Speaking at a protest rally, he also warned that the EC will have to step down if it fails to prevent the Prime Minister from carrying out election campaign.
Moudud, a BNP standing committee member, came up with the comment as a newspaper reported that Sheikh Hasina is going to launch her party’s polls campaign by visiting the shrine of Hazrat Shahjalal (R) in Sylhet on January 30.
Jatiyatabadi Swechchhasebak Dal arranged the programme at the Jatiya Press Club, protesting the arrest of its two top leaders, reports UNB.
“We usually start election campaign after the announcement of its schedule. Over 10 months are still left for the polls but the Prime Minister is going to begin the election campaign keeping us confined,” he said.
Under the circumstances, the BNP leader said, “The Election Commission should tell the ruling party that no campaign can be conducted now.If the Commission fails to do so, it must quit. We don’t want to see such a biased Commission.”
Moudud said the EC will have to create a level-playing field and equal scope for all the parties if it allows the Prime Minister and ruling party to carry out election campaign now.
He also urged the government to take steps so that BNP also can conduct the campaign enjoying the same facilities. “You don’t have any right to launch the campaign, if you don’t allow us to do the same."
The BNP leader also said the ruling party has exposed its ‘cowardly attitude’ by taking a move to conduct unilateral polls campaign. “There’s no credit in you will conduct the campaign keeping us confined with cases and repressive acts.”
He said it will send out a message that Awami League does not want a participatory and competitive nation election if the party starts a lopsided campaign.
Moudud urged the government to engage in talks for reaching an understanding over the nature of an election-time government.
Or else, he warned, their party will start a decisive movement at a suitable time to force the government to accept people’s demand for a non-party election time government. “We’ll announce our last and final programme at an appropriate time and create a mass upheaval.”