A senior policymaker of main opposition BNP Monday apologised over his party’s absence in parliament on June 6, when Finance Minister AMA Muhith submitted the proposed budget for FY2013-14.
While delivering his speech on the supplementary budget for FY2012-13 Moudud Ahmed said: “We were not present [when the finance minister placed the budget]. I am sorry for this.”
Moudud said: “The finance minister termed our absence a national tragedy. However, we have just followed the path you [Awami League] have shown from 2001 to 2006 [during BNP rule].”
The BNP standing committee member and former law minister said parliamentary boycott was a “bad” political tool, and “it should stop in the future.”
According to Moudud Bangladesh is a “regulated” democracy. He said: “The government supports democracy, but not the opposition. The government’s approach is to destroy the opposition.”
Referring to the disappearances of two BNP leaders M. Ilyias Ali and Chowdhury Alam, allegedly through government action, Moudud said the government should stop referring to the two of them as “missing.”
He said the opposition party would like to attend parliament till the last day of the house, as long as the treasury bench MPs were cautious about their comments and Speaker of the House remained neutral.
Moudud warned ruling party MPs about speaking antagonistically about the opposition leader Khaleda Zia and her son Tarique Rahman. He said: “Otherwise, they will get an appropriate reply.”
“Tarique Rahman will land in Bangladesh when the time comes,” he said, which was accompanied by desk thumping from opposition MPs.
Moudud said the BNP does not need a political programme to destroy the government, because the Chhatra League and Juba League (Awami League’s student and youth fronts) were doing enough to accomplish the task. “We encourage them to go ahead with their activities,” said Moudud.
The BNP and its allies joined parliament on June 3, after 83 days of consecutive boycott. They were not present on Thursday when the budget was presented in parliament, but returned on Sunday.