BNP will look into party leaders’ past record and loyalty to finalise candidates for the upcoming city corporation elections. The party is planning a surprise candidate for the Rangpur City Corporation.
Several BNP leaders hinted that the party-backed mayors in Barisal and Gazipur City Corporations could be dropped off the list.
Candidates who may lose the selection race
BNP prefers party Vice-Chairman Selima Rahman and former mayor Mujibur Rahman Sarwar as a replacement to incumbent Barisal City Corporation Mayor Ahsan Habib Kamal. Gazipur City Corporation Mayor MA Mannan may also be denied candidacy in the next polls.
Party sources said MA Mannan had gone abroad in the name of treatment just before BNP’s “March for Democracy” programme in 2014. Party chief Khaleda Zia has been angry with him since then.
BNP has a surprise plan for Rangpur. As the party’s organisation is not that strong in the city, BNP policymakers are likely to poach a Jatiya Party central leader to join the party and give him the nomination.
The party is not willing to announce the name of the Jatiya Party leader right now.
A source from the party claimed that the Jatiya Party leader will join BNP by welcoming Khaleda Zia on her return from London.
Those who will remain unchanged
Party sources said there is little scope of candidates from Khulna, Rajshahi and Sylhet City Corporations being changed.
Rajshahi Mayor Mohammad Mosaddek Hossain Bulbul, Sylhet Mayor Ariful Haque Chowdhury and Khulna Mayor Md Moniruzzaman are also likely to hold on to their nominations.
Two vice-chairmen of BNP confirmed that the high command plans to retain their nomination because of their positive record.
BNP’s nomination board and standing committee member Dr Khandakar Mosharraf said: “We will declare candidates after the Election Commission announces the poll schedule. Candidates will be picked considering their activities and past record.”
This story was first published on Bangla Tribune.