• Wednesday, Nov 13, 2019
  • Last Update : 11:54 am

CEC: Commission not responsible for low voter turnout

  • Published at 11:49 am February 28th, 2019
CEC Nurul Huda
CEC KM Nurul Huda casting his ballot at a polling centre in Uttara area on February 28, 2019 Mehedi Hasan

KM Nurul Huda added that the political parties must shoulder the responsibility in this regard

Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda has stated that the commission cannot take responsibility for low voter turnout in the Dhaka north and south city corporation mayoral by-polls and elections.

He commented this after casting his ballot at a polling centre in IES School & College, Uttara around 10:30am on Thursday.

Speaking with the reporters after voting, Nurul Huda said: “The Election Commission cannot visit voters door-to-door and bring them to polling centres on voting day. The commission is not responsible for low voter turnout, the political parties must shoulder this responsibility.”

When asked about the reason behind low voter turnout, the CEC added: “The inclement weather could be affecting the presence of voters in polling centres. 

“However, there are two major reasons for the low number of voters. The first one is that the elected officials’ tenure will last for only one year, and then another election will be held. The second reason is the lack of major political parties participating in the polls, which has made the election not very competitive.” 

Nurul Huda furthered that the responsibility of incorporating major political parties in the city polls must be shouldered by the political parties, and not by the Election Commission.

Responding to query on voter presence, the CEC said: “There is not a lack of effort from the polling officials and the commission in organizing the election. The low number of voters is not our responsibility. 

“However, we can certainly say the election is being held in a fair and peaceful manner. People are casting their votes without any hassle. The voting will continue till 4pm, and the turnout could increase as the day progresses. People are exercising their voting rights.”

Nurul Huda also mentioned that the final voter turnout might not reach a high number.

According to presiding officers, around 1% of voters have cast their ballots at the three polling centres located in IES School & College, Uttara, till the filing of this report.