This is Dhaka Tribune’s live blog of the two-day council, which was held on Friday and Saturday
Sajeda Chowdhury, Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim, Matia Chowdhury
Shahjahan Khan, Jahangir Kabir Nanak, Abdur Rahman
Mohammad Nasim, Kazi Zafar Ullah
Advocate Sahara Khatun, Engineer Mosharraf Hossain, Syed Ashraful Islam
Pijush Kanti Bhattacharya, Nurul Islam Nahid, Dr Md Abdur Razzak
Lt Col (retd) Muhammad Faruq Khan, Ramesh Chandra Sen
Advocate Abdul Mannan Khan, Advocate Abdul Matin Khasru
Joint General Secretary
Mahbubul Hanif, Dipu Moni
Dr Hasan Mahmud, AFM Bahauddin Nas
Ahmed Hossain, BM Mozammel Hoque, Abu Sayeed Al Mahmud Swapan
SM Kamal, Mirza Azam
International Affairs Secretary
Bar Biplob Barua
Abdus Sobhan Golap
Women's Affairs Secretary
Meher Afroze Chumki
1:28pm- Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina closes council session.
1:27pm- Ahmed Hossain, B M Mozammel, Abu Sayeed Al Mahmud Sopon, S M Kamal, Mirza Azom are made new organizing secretaries.
Most of the ministers are dropped from the central committee.
1:25pm- Shahjahan Khan, Jahangir Kabir Nanak and Abdur Rahman are made new presidium members while Mahbubul Alam Hanif, Dipu Moni, Hasan Mahmud and AFM Bahauddin Nasim are made joint general secretaries.
1:11pm- Quader becomes general secretary again.
1:10pm- Jahangir Kabir Nanok is proposing Obaidul Quader’s name as general secretary.
1:08pm- Sheikh Hasina is re-elected Awami League president for the next three years.
1:06pm- On behalf of all councilors, Sheikh Hasina’s name is proposed by Abdul Matin Khasru as Awami League president.
1:05pm- Election process starts.
12:53pm- Advocate Yusuf Hossain Humayun, chief election commissioner, along with two other commissioners --Moshiur Rahman and Dr Saidur Rahman—take seat.
12:50pm- Running committee, including central, advisory and parliamentary bodies, become vacant.
12:32pm- Post of assistant secretary of Awami League Central Sub Committee becomes vacant.
12:21pm- Councilors approve party’s budget and constitution.
12:09pm- Eight leaders from eight divisions of the country demand that grassroots organizations be strengthened.
12:06pm- Awmi League treasurer Ashiqur Rahman submits budget.
12:04pm- With speech of Bandarban district president, segment for speeches of grassroots leaders end.
11:45am- President of Comilla Awami League (North) addressing the session.
11:32am- President of Sylhet City Awami League takes to the stage.
11:26am- Miraz Mollah, president of Rajshahi, and Sujit Adhikari, secretary of Khulna district Awami League, give their speech.
11:16am- Media workers are asked to go outside the venue as the closed door session begins.
11:13am- Thakurgaon district president gives speech.
11:00am- “None but Sheikh Hasina is imperative for the party. There is no alternative to her,” Quader says adding that Awami League sustaining because of the love of the people.
He says: “If anyone thinks that cleansing drive (against casino business, extortion, corruption, and terrorism) has weakened, then they are wrong. Everyone’s work is under surveillance.”
10:56am- Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader submitting party’s report on the last three years.
He says: “I have played this role for the last three years. It was a strong team work. Our team has kept contact with the grassroots members and held several councils for different units.”
10:47am- Addressing the session, PM says: “We cannot let the sacrifices of the martyrs go in vein, so we have to gain the trust of the people.
“Many lose popularity when in power for a prolonged period of time, but we have successfully maintained it.”
She continues: “Everyone will have to follow the principles of the Father of the Nation to the development of the country.”
10:45am- Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and 7,737 councillors from across Bangladesh join the session.
(Saturday) 10:40am- Second session of the Awami League council begins at Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB).
5: 10pm- Prime minister adjourns the council session till 10:30am on Saturday. However, Cultural program will continue from 6:30pm again.
4: 53pm- Sheikh Hasina says: “Awami League is now countries largest and strongest organization.”
4: 38pm- Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addressing the council.
4: 22pm- Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader is reading out poem on Bengal and emergence of Bangladesh.
4: 12pm- One minute silence is being observed.
4: 04pm- Awami League Office Secretary Abdus sobhan Golap giving speech remembering the lost souls of Awami League leaders, their family members and also world leaders.
3:50pm- Verses from holy books are being recited.
3:49pm- Cultural program ends.
Party insiders said that they were still in the dark about the upcoming leadership changes in the party.
Although the party president will remain in her position, activists have been curious about who will be the general secretary of the party. Speculations are making the rounds as to whether the present general secretary will be re-elected or a new face will be inducted in the position.
3:08pm- Cultural program begins.
3:06pm- Sheikh Hasina takes seat on stage.
3:04pm- PM inaugurates the council by releasing pigeon. She also releases balloon along with Quader.
3:01pm- Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader hoists party flag as the national anthem is being played.
3:00pm- PM Sheikh Hasina reaches Suhrawardy Udyan, hoists national flag on stage.
The 21st National Council of the Bangladesh Awami League, one of the oldest and largest political parties in the country, will be held on Friday and Saturday. Central leadership of the party will be elected in the two-day council.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the longest-serving president in the history of the party, will inaugurate the council at 3pm. She will address the gathering at the end of the program.
Around 7,500 councillors, 15,000 delegates, and 5,000 special guests are expected to join the opening ceremony, according to party insiders. Several thousands of party followers and activists from all over the country will congregate near the venue of the triennial mega event.