The two-year tenure of the incumbent BGMEA leadership expired on September 22, 2017. However, the current leaders of the association have managed to prolong their tenure by getting a series of extensions from the Commerce Ministry, to the dissatisfaction of many apparel exporters
A new platform called Shadhinata Parishad has been launched to contest the upcoming Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) election slated for April 6.
The platform will be led by Jahangir Alam, managing director of Design and Source Limited.
Typically, two platforms take part in the BGMEA polls: Sammilita Parishad and Forum.
With the emergence of the new platform, the election may be in line for a shake up, apparel industry insiders said.
The two-year tenure of the incumbent BGMEA leadership expired on September 22, 2017. However, the current leaders of the association have managed to prolong their tenure by getting a series of extensions from the Commerce Ministry, to the dissatisfaction of many apparel exporters.
At a view exchange meeting with journalists in Dhaka, Shadhinata Parishad chief Jahangir Alam said the general members of the BGMEA were being deprived of their rights and having to pay for services from the BGMEA office due to the absence of an election for nearly two years.
“We have decided to contest the election to ensure the rights of members and to restore the electoral system within the BGMEA,” Jahangir said, adding that the BGMEA currently lacks accountability as the incumbent leaders were “selected, not elected.”
Leaders of the platform also said they will take legal action if the electoral process was averted through negotiation.
“There is pressure on us not to participate in the election, but for the sake of the apparel sector and its existence, I think an election should be held. My struggle to elect a leadership that is accountable through proper electoral processes will continue,” Jahangir said.
“If elected, I will try to represent real scenario of the sector and to protect the members’ rights,” he added.
In the election, Shadhinata Parishad will contest the posts of 35 directors, including 25 from Dhaka and 10 from Chittagong zone.
Joint convener of the Shadhinata Parishad and Managing Director of Olira Fashions Limited Md Humayoun Rashid Rony, platform member and South West Composite Managing Director Shabbir Mahmood, and Zain Apparels Managing Director Md Zahid Hassan were present at the meeting
The electoral board of the BGMEA has set February 28 as the last date for submitting nomination papers, and March 6 as last date for withdrawal of candidature for the polls.