The Election Commissioner also said Sunday’s election was the first fully participatory election in the country
After having a series of public disputes with his colleagues at the Election Commission on the 11th general elections, Election Commissioner Mahbub Talukder on Wednesday applauded the Commission for successfully organizing such a huge national event.
“The election was free, fair and all-inclusive,” he said at a post-election celebration ceremony at the Election Commission Secretariat. “I believe this election will go down in the country’s history as an example, and create a precedence for the future elections.”
Speaking of the past general elections, Mahbub said none of those elections had been completely participatory.
“You know that our election process has not been consistent,” he said. “Some of the elections were held under caretaker government, some under party government, and some under army-supported government. None of those elections were fully participatory. Sunday’s election was the first time the country saw a fully participatory election.”
Mahbub also said he now understood what a daunting task it was to organize a general election.
“I had no idea how huge a task it was,” he said at the program. “I had never worked with the Election Commission before. Being a part of this commission for this election has been a huge experience for me.”
Speaking to other officials of the commission, he said: “Working with you all, I witnessed for myself how you worked relentlessly to make the election successful. If I were not directly involved with this process, I would have never understood what a massive task it is.”
He particularly praised the Election Commission secretaries.
“I noticed that Election Commission Secretary Helal Uddin Ahmed, as well as the additional secretary, joint secretary, deputy secretary and others worked tirelessly.”
Mahbub also thanked Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda, saying his time at the Election Commission had been the most intense work experience.
Mahbub’s remarks on Wednesday came in stark contrast to his position with the Election Commission before the polls.
The Election Commissioner had taken a stance against the rest of the Commission on several issues, including the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs).
The Commissioner gave a note of dissent when the Election Commission decided to use the EVMs in the general elections. On two occasions, he boycotted the Election Commission meetings when his recommendations were not put on the meeting agenda.
A few days before the elections, Mahbub said there was no level playing field for the political parties – a claim that was vehemently denied by CEC KM Nurul Huda.