MT Online Desk:
Obaidul Quader, the general secretary of the ruling Awami League, has said they are prepared to confront the BNP, be it in the election or in relation to the political movement.
The general secretary candidly spoke about the election-time government and other alliance issues ahead of the next election.
He expressed his hope that the Awami League will remain in power for a third consecutive term through the 11th national election, as it is about to finish its second term determined through a victory in the 10th national election boycotted by the BNP.
They are hoping to translate the dream of remaining in power into reality based on the support from the young voters and the women, Quader said.
The BNP was not successful to prevent the 10th national election after boycotting it. Therefore, the ruling party is not paying much heed to the BNP’s threat to foil the upcoming election in December, he said.
Quader said that they were expecting a repeat of the violent protest launched by the Jamaat-BNP alliance in 2014. However, he added that they were fully prepared to confront it.
“We’re aware that they are preparing for doing something similar but we’re alert and prepared to confront it in a way they deserve. We have the support of people.”
BNP’s lack of capacity to stir the movement has brought relief to a certain extent to the AL general secretary. “The people have never responded to them in the last nine years. They could not initiate any movement but fail,” he said.
The Awami League will nominate competent candidates for the election assuming that the BNP will participate in the election, said Quader.
“We’ll nominate our contestants after scrutiny — based on their acceptability to people.”
ELECTION WITHOUT BNP
The Awami League general secretary found it alright if the BNP boycotts the upcoming election although their absence in the last election caused a heavy criticism to the government at home and abroad.
“We never asked the BNP to stay away from the election. It is their democratic right and they should decide whether to use it or not. Nobody will wait for them.”
The AL has been refusing the BNP’s demand for the non-partisan polls-time government during the general election. In recent times, the BNP has demanded the release of its chairperson and also a dialogue with the government.
Quader said the government has nothing to do with Khaleda’s imprisonment as it is completely the jurisdiction of the judiciary.
He also said there is no time or opportunity left for a dialogue between the ruling party and the opposition.
BNP NOT ELIGIBLE FOR POLLS-TIME GOVT
The general secretary also pointed it out that the BNP cannot take part in the ‘election-time government’ as they have no representation in parliament.
The Election Commission will be responsible for everything related to the election while the government will only do the routine work, he said.
YOUTH, WOMEN ARE TRUMP CARDS
Although the government was criticised for its role during the students’ movement for quota reform in the government jobs and campaign for safer roads, Quader was optimistic to win the young hearts.
“The Awami League will be the winner based on the support of the young people and the women,” said Quader.
“First-time and women voters are the trump cards for the Awami League,” he said adding that the conspiracy hatched against the government in relation to the campaign for safer roads has become clear to the people in Bangladesh.
Quader sought the support from the forces supporting the spirit of the Liberation War saying it will be considered if anyone wants to come to the same platform as the Awami League.