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Dhaka Tribune

How about a president for us all?

Update : 11 Apr 2013, 04:11 PM

The time is ripe to select a non-partisan candidate as president of Bangladesh. With the death of former president Zillur Rahman, with Speaker Abdul Hamid carrying on his duties as acting president, the next parliamentary session set to begin on April 21, and only 90 days in which to elect a new head of state, setting the deadline at June 21, the opportunity is at hand for our parliamentarians to keep away from traditional practices, in particular that of selecting someone from the ruling party, and opt for a neutral president who would be better able to work with all of the parties on an equal footing.

An independent candidate would be better able to steer clear of partisan politics, and thus would be more acceptable to the general public. After all, the president is the representative of the entire nation, not merely the ruling party, and the prime minister already holds the post of leader of the ruling party. 

Bear in mind that some of our former presidents were chief justices as well. There was Abu Sadat Mohammad Sayem, who held the post from November 1975 to April 1977, Shahabuddin Ahmed, who was president from December 1990 to October 1991, and Justice AFM Ahsanuddin Chowdhury (March 1982 to December 1983). 

The names of several candidates are being discussed. However, of all the candidates under consideration, Prof Anisuzzaman would perhaps be best suited as head of state. Not to denigrate any of the other very worthy names under consideration but, as he is not of the ruling party, nor the opposition, he would be able to ensure non-partisanship and a neutral and just voice to speak for the people.

It would make for a nice and welcome change. 

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