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Dhaka Tribune

BNP calls EC's RPO amendment move 'illegal'

Update : 31 Jul 2013, 09:11 AM


Main opposition BNP called the Election Commission's move to amend the Representation of People Order (RPO) "illegal" and "ill-motivated.""

BNP Standing Committee member MK Anwar made this accusation at a press meet at the party's Nayapaltan office on Wednesday.

"The main opposition and other parties of the country will not accept the EC's move to exclude article 91(E) from the RPO," he said.

"People will demand a non-party election commission in the future, in the same way they are doing now for the caretaker government system, if the government brings changes to the RPO."

The commission on Tuesday justified its move to exclude article 91(E) ""“ which empowers it to cancel the candidacy of any political party when it deems it has committed a gross violation of electoral codes of conduct.

Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Rakibuddin Ahmad, in a press briefing at the EC secretariat, spoke publicly on the issue for the first time, and stated that ""scrapping the provision would not weaken the commission.""

However, the commission's amendment proposal, sent to the law ministry for vetting last Thursday, included the article.

The proposal was sent back for a fourth time with the suggestion to omit the article, which would remove the power to cancel candidacy from the EC's hands and give it to the government.

Calling the article ""self-contradictory, meaningless and inapplicable,"" the CEC claimed: ""If it exists in the RPO, it would create discrimination among the candidates of the election.""


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