Convince govt to hold reelection, Oikya Front urges envoys

Jatiya Oikyafront leaders on Sunday urged the foreign diplomats stationed in Dhaka to convince the government to hold another election in a free and fair manner to resolve the crisis over the national election. At a meeting with the foreign diplomats, the senior Oikyafront leaders, led by Dr Kamal Hossain, also presented various allegations of election irregularities and provided the envoys with different paper cuttings and video clips in this regard.
The nearly one-and-a-half-hour meeting was held at Hotel Amari in the city. Emerging from the meeting, Dr Kamal Hossain said, “We had a very good discussion. We drew their attention to what had happened on the voting day. They themselves saw what had happened. So, there was no debate on it. We placed information and data over the election irregularities before them.”
He further said, “They (envoys) gave us a patient hearing. I requested them to convince the government to hold another election to resolve the prevailing problem.”
Dr Kamal, also the convener of the Oikyafront, said the diplomats wanted to know what their alliance now wants. “We told them people will be able to peacefully exercise their voting rights if a good election is held, and it can help peacefully resolve the crisis. It’ll also pave a way for all of us building a bright future of the country together.”
He said they think the friendly foreign countries can play a constructive role in the interest of the country, its people and democracy by creating pressure on the government to hold a credible election.
“We would like to say let bygones be bygones. Now we want a good election to be held. A democratic government will be established if a peaceful election is ensured, and such administration will be able to fulfil the hopes and aspirations of people.”
A Gano Forum leader who was present at the meeting said Dr Kamal Hossain first addressed the meeting and depicted the pre-election atmosphere and the various election ‘irregularities’ that took place the night before the voting and the election day.
Later, he said a power-point presentation was made on the ‘election frauds’ and various allegations of vote ‘rigging’ and results ‘anomalies’.
The Gano Forum leader said BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir also talked about election violence and how a ‘controlled’ election was held using the state machinery. Three female Oikyafront candidates–Afroza Abbas, Rumana Morshed Kanak Chapa and Zeba Kham– also shared their experiences of the election.
BNP sources said Ambassadors, High Commissioners and representatives from over 30 countries and organisations, including the UN, the EU, the USA, the UK, France, Canada, Germany, Australia, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Norway, Italy, Denmark, Spain, Russia, India, China, Pakistan, Japan, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Morocco, Nepal, Malaysia and Iran, attended the meeting.
Apart from Dr Kamal and Mirza Fakhrul, BNP standing committee member Gayeshwar Chandra Roy, Abdul Moyeen Khan, Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury, vice chairman Abdul Awal Mintoo, JSD president ASM Abdur Rob, Gano Forum executive president Subrata Chowdhury, general secretary Mostafa Mohsin Montu, Nagorik Oikya convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna and Gonoshasthya Kendra founder Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury were, among others, present. source: UNB
Dhaka, Jan 06 – The opposition alliance Jatiya Oikya Front on Sunday handed over various documents to foreign diplomats on alleged irregularities and manipulation of votes before and on the polling day of December 30.
“We have provided some documents to them (diplomats) over the incidents took place on previous and during the polling day. Along with this, we have also provided them with a pen drive with contents of
whatever the incidents took place on the previous and polling day,” said Oikya Front leader Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury after a meeting with foreign diplomats based in Dhaka.
He said they have been able to understand the diplomats that the election was not held n a free and fair manner. “They also understood our message and gave us assurance,” he added.
Oikya Front top leader and Ganoforum president Dr Kamal Hossain who led the alliance delegation told reporters that the foreign diplomats did not disagree with the allegations brought by them over the elections what they termed “a cruel mockery to the democracy.”
Asked about the response from the diplomats, he said they seemed that they also consider the allegations over the elections as they are stating.
He regretted that they expected to celebrate the golden jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence all together but it was destroyed through this election.
“We have demanded to hold a fresh election under a non-partisan government as the election was not desired by them,” he said.
The elderly leader said the government should hold an acceptable election to build a good society.
Asked whether the foreign diplomats gave them any assurance to put pressure on the government for holding a fresh election, he said they made such urge for holding a good election.
“They diplomats) are well-wishers of the people and not against any side. They are also well-wishers of the government that also wants to establish democracy,” he said.
“All the diplomats heard us with patience and wanted to know about the next course of action…In reply to them, we said that there should be reelection under a non-partisan government to restore the democracy in the country,”
He said an ambassador wanted to know about the course of action for the seven lawmakers-elect from the Oikya Front during sideline conversation with him.
The Oikya Front leaders briefed the foreign diplomats at Hotel Amari in the city from 4:15 pm to 6:00 pm.
The meeting was also attended among others, by BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Goyeshwar Chandra Roy, Abdul Awal Mintoo, Dr Asaduzzaman Ripon, Golam Maula Rony, Afroza Abbas and Rumana Morshed Kanak Chanpa.– Staff Reporter