JP’s political overtures of convenience or concern?

Is political polarisation in the offing with the announcement of Jatiya Party chairman former President HM Ershad to leave the Awami League –led 14-party ruling alliance.Senior JP leaders made it clear that they would leave the grand alliance anytime. “It is a matter of time to quit the Awami League led 14-party alliance,” said a senior leader of the party preferring to anonymity.
The JP senior leader said thyeir party chairman during his meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made it clear that they don’t want to remain anymore with 14-party alliance.
JP’s political twist can however go bothways and has come at a time when the AL-led alliance has reaffirmed its determination to go ahead in respect of general elections or otherwise on its own terms. Thus in case BNP cames under fresh purge ahead of the elections, JP can say it offers the altermnative opposition. JP’s stance may also suit its participation in election also if all parties take part.
The JP senior leader made the comments a day after Ershad at a party function said that they don’t want to remain with the grand alliance and would leave it in an appropriate time.
On the other hand, Gazipur district Jatiya Party on the same day extended their support to the BNP-led 18-party alliance backed candidate Prof MA Mannan.
The Jatiya Party leader quoted Ershad as saying, “We have been deprived too much. We don’t want to be deprived anymore. There will be no benifit of calling us to be with them any more.”
He said the former President explained the Prime Minister that they didn’t discuss with Jatiya Party the matters like appointment of the President, the Speaker and the selection of candidates for four city corporations of Rajshahi, Khulna, Barisal and Sylhet and finally even of Gazipur.
The Jatiya Party chief also reportedly made it clear that they are no more with the 14-party alliance, the JP leader added. It’s to be noted that after his meeting with the PM the JP chief had given a somewhat different impression.
He said Ershad was asked as to he was leaving the grand alliance fro fear of repression after changing of power and he replied that it was the creation of both the two major parties.
The JP leader said Ershad made it clear that his party won’t support the 14-party backed candidate in the Gazipur City Corporation election.
Leader of the House and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina held an hour-long meeting with Ershad in Parliament on Thursday.
Asked whether the Jatiya Party has a plan to join the 18-party opposition alliance, he left it to the journalists to judge to ponder about.
Jatiya Party senior presidium member Kazi Firoz Rashid however said they would form a post-election alliance to form the next government. But with whom?
“We will give candidatures in all the 300 constituencies alone in the next elections,” he said.
Asked when his party may leave the 14-party alliance, he said it would take place in an appropriate time. Replying to a question, the former minister said he doesn’t see possibility of holding the next elections.
Asked to comment on extending support to the 18-party backed candidate in Gazipur, he said since it is a local government election they (AL) didn’t create any pressure on them (JP).
Reports from Gazipur have it that local Jatiya Party leaders and activists on Sunday were seen to carry out election campaign in favour of 18-party candidate.
Earlier on Saturday, while addressing a rally of grassroots level leaders and activists of greater Dhaka district at Banani Ground in the city, Ershad said, “We don’t want to remain with the grand alliance. Party workers also prefer not to stay with them. We will take part in the polls alone. We will leave the alliance at an appropriate time.”
“Now, they feel the importance of the Jatiya Party. They didn’t care about the party during more than four years. They will not get any response if they call us at this moment,” he added.
Regarding the much-talked-about meeting with opposition leader Khaleda Zia, the JP chief said he went to Singapore for treatment but was accused of hatching conspiracy.
“What was wrong, if I had met the opposition leader,” he asked saying that both the opposition leader and he are in politics Besides, Khaleda is not his enemy.
– Staff Reporter

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