Bangladesh is now seen internationally as a country of enormous economic potential, and in recent years, the country has made huge progress in many social indicators including poverty alleviation, child mortality, and others. And yet, the political culture and associated violence seems to be on the rise, frustrating the general public.
I have a very limited understanding of Bangladeshi politics and politics in general, however, I still can’t stop thinking about a probable resolution to get out from the political deadlock that’s been orchestrated by the two major parties since the ousting of the Ershad government.
Essentially, the country is in the grip and cycle of a duopoly political dynasty where neither is prepared to let go of the other, and in the process are jeopardising the livelihood and living conditions of the general people, and punching a serious blow to the socio-economic fabric and progress of the country. There seems to be no end in sight to such a cycle of violence emanating from the aggressive politics run by these families.
This is why the business leaders, journalists, lawyers, think-tanks and the broader public need to voice their concerns and look seriously for a political resolve before the country is broken into pieces and rendered into a lawless no-mans-land, or a “failed state” like many other countries near and far.
My proposal broadly encompasses a way to free the Mujib and Zia families from the duties of government functions. These families in combination have led the liberation war and have made immense sacrifices during and after the liberation of the country.
The countrymen have deep respect for both the families and in the interest that the respect is held firm, these families should be allowed to move out from active politics and running of the administration. We have seen such examples from Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, and others.
I firmly believe that relieving the Mujib and Zia families from politics in itself shall stimulate and rejuvenate politics so much, that the seed of democracy, leadership, and political professionalism will ensue in each party, and the political parties in their own interest will revise their manifestos to ensure leadership on the basis of merit and not inheritance.
The summary of my proposal and recommendations Establish political dialogue to agree on an all-party government for two years. The functions of the new interim government besides the general administration would be to undertake and complete specific tasks as directed by the ninth Parliament. The specific tasks are to include the following. Amend the constitution for allowing ceremonial powers to the Mujib and Zia families for consecutive terms in recognition of their contribution to the liberation war and independence. The technical details for such nomination can be worked out by constitution and law experts. Amend the constitution (if necessary) for smooth and independent operation of the three divisions of the state: The administration, the judiciary, and the parliament. Make laws to ensure establishing of democracy within all registered political parties by reference to established democracies, such as the UK, USA, and others. Establish policy to ensure free and independent functioning of the Election Commission and the anti-corruption regime. Make laws to ensure neutral operations of other institutions free from political influence of the ruling party by specifically holding the head of the government department accountable for the smooth and professional functioning of each department.