POST TIME: 15 January, 2019 12:13:50 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 15 January, 2019 12:13:58 PM
Oikyafront national dialogue Jan 28
Rafiqul Islam Azad, Dhaka

Oikyafront national dialogue Jan 28

The Opposition alliance Jatiya Oikyafront, in which the BNP is the major partner, will hold its planned National Dialogue on January 28 in the city to determine its next course of political action following the setback in the December 30 parliamentary elections. After it was denied permission to hold the proposed dialogue at a bigger venue like the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh, the Oikyafront finally decided to hold the dialogue with eminent persons, professional leaders and politicians at Jatiya Press Club, according to Oikyafront sources.

“We want to hear in the national dialogue the views and opinions of conscious people, including eminent people and politicians, to decide our next course of action,” said the Oikyafront’s top leader, Dr Kamal Hossain. He said they also want to know about the prioritised demands of the people following the parliamentary elections.

Dr Kamal Hossain, also the president of Ganoforum, expressed his optimism about the success of the national dialogue, saying it would help in reaching an agreement to go forward. The Oikyafront leader said he would go to Singapore next week for health check-up and return home before the dialogue.  

The daylong dialogue will begin at 11am on January 28 and continue till the afternoon, confirmed Gano Sastha Kendra founder and Oikyafront leader Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury.

He said eminent citizens, professional leaders and politicians of different political parties would be invited to take part in the dialogue to determine the next course of action, following the rejection of the elections by the Oikyafront.

“We want to exchange views and hear from eminent personalities, professional leaders and politicians as to what we should do in the prevailing situation,” he said.

Chowdhury said they believe in positive politics and do not believe in the politics of hartal, anarchy and destruction.

BNP vice-chairman Shamsuzzaman Dudu said the Oikyafront has been established comprising people from all spheres of life, including politicians, in a bid to restore the democratic and voting rights of the people.

“The Oikyafront now wants all the people, including professionals and politicians, to stand on a single platform to achieve the target by exchanging views,” he said.

At a steering committee meeting on January 8, the Oikyafront adopted a three-step course of action, including organising a national dialogue demanding fresh elections under a non-partisan neutral government.

As part of the two other programmes, cases would be filed before the election tribunals by the Oikyafront candidates who faced a debacle in the December 30 parliamentary elections and they would visit the areas that were affected during the elections. The Oikyafront started out on the new phase of its political course of action to turn around in politics after all its candidates barring seven were defeated because of what it claimed was ‘vote dacoity’ in connivance with the Election Commission, the police and the administration.

The ruling Awami League-led Grand Alliance secured a landslide victory, picking up 288 out of 299 constituencies, while the Oikyafront candidates could only garner eight seats. The Oikyafront has decided its lawmakers-elect would not take oath, seeking fresh elections under a non-partisan neutral government.