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Dr Kamal wants CEC replaced with a 'credible' person

  • Published at 06:04 pm November 25th, 2018
Dr Kamal
Dr Kamal Hossain talking to the media about Bangladesh’s overall political situation and the election atmosphere, at the National Press Club on November 25, 2018 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

He was talking to the media about Bangladesh’s overall political situation and the election atmosphere, at the National Press Club on Sunday

Gono Forum chief and opposition alliance Jatiya Oikya Front leader Dr Kamal Hossain has demanded replacement of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) KM Nurul Huda with a “trustworthy and credible person” for the sake of a free and fair general election.

"We could not be happy after talking to the CEC. We had earlier demanded, after holding talks with the Election Commission that the CEC be replaced by a credible person,” Kamal told a press briefing at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Sunday.

He said that Oikya Front had directly told the CEC that they were not happy with his activities. “We told him [Huda] that our opinion about him would only change if he had started discharging his duties impartially.”

Oikya Front leaders had asked Huda to clarify reasons behind his order to the law enforcement agencies to arrest people.

“So that we could scrutinize the allegations against the arrested person to know whether the arrest orders were justified or the CEC just played role on behalf of the government,” said Kamal.

He said they would take steps if the commission continued to follow the government’s orders. “However, we are not criticizing the CEC strongly for now.”

He hoped that the commission would start working on creating a congenial atmosphere to hold a credible election on December 30.

Alleging that mass arrest of opposition men were still undemocratically on, the Oikya Front leader said: “Prisons are filled with opposition leaders and activists. We saw that they had released detainees only to provide political detainees space in the jail.”

Such wholesale arrest was not at all conducive to create a congenial election atmosphere, he added.

"The arrests must be stopped. Police are the force of the state... They are not the government’s forces.

“Police have to work towards creating a proper election atmosphere. Alongside maintaining a rule of law, they must protect the rights of the opposition parties too, not bar them,” said Kamal.

He also sought cooperation from the media, requesting them to illustrate what was “truly happening” across the country centring the polls.

The eminent jurist, who was one of the authors of the country’s constitution, also talked about various issues relating to the 11th general election and the country's latest political situation.