POST TIME: 22 January, 2019 12:36:31 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 22 January, 2019 12:46:08 PM
BNP to evaluate post-election situation
next course of action

BNP to evaluate post-election situation

The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) will determine its next course of action after evaluating the party’s organisational state from the central to the grassroots level and the post-election situation across the country, according to party leaders. Instead of waging a movement, the party is giving priority to looking after the party leaders and activists those were killed and injured and affected allegedly by ruling party cadres during the December 30 parliamentary elections.

The BNP has now concentrated on looking after party leaders and activists who were victims of attacks by ruling party men during the election. However, the party will determine its next course of action after holding talks with party leaders from the central to the grassroots level, said the leaders.

“We are holding talks and meetings every day at different levels and discussing the situation following the elections,” said a senior leader, preferring anonymity.

He also said the party has already held meetings with candidates of the "sheaf of paddy", the poll symbol of the BNP,  and organising secretaries and discussed the election and post-election situation.

The party has asked organising secretaries of 10 organisational divisions to send reports to the central office about the organisational state in their respective areas, he added. He said the party’s top leaders are likely to hold meetings in every division to exchange views and opinion on the field-level situation and to determine the next course of action.

“The meetings are likely to be held at the party’s central office or in the respective divisional headquarters,” he added.  

BNP standing committee member Lt Gen (Retd) Mahbubur Rahman said their experience in the last elections was very bad, something they did not expect. “The party may have some weaknesses, but we do not believe that such a debacle was expected. Now, we have to discuss and evaluate all the odds to overcome the situation,” he observed.

The former Army chief said the party would have to move forward and determine the next course of action by holding talks and evaluating the situation.    

Party vice-chairman Shamsuzzaman Dudu said party top brass is now busy protecting leaders and activists affected during the elections and hundreds of those implicated in false cases. “The post-election situation is being discussed and evaluated. We will determine our next course of action after holding talks with party leaders at all levels,” he added.

Party organising secretary (Rangpur division) Asadul Habib Dulu said that they are now looking after affected party leaders and activists. He also said the party will also hold meetings with party leaders in every division. “We have a tentative date to hold a meeting for Rangpur division on January 24,” he added.

Another organising secretary (Cumilla division), Col (retd) Anwarul Azim, said the party secretary general asked them to submit report on the organiszational state at the divisional level. He also said they hold meetings with central leaders from time to time to inform them about the organisational state.

Party organising secretary (Sylhet division) Dr Sakhawat Hasan Jibon said they are facing a challenge to stay beside leaders and activists who suffered repression by ruling party cadres during the elections. “It is our major task to stand beside the victims’ families and those affected and implicated in false cases and ensure their release,” he added.

Another organising secretary (Mymensingh), Imran Saleh Prince, said their candidates did not face debacle due to weak organisational strength, but were defeated by the “state mechanism” and “manipulation of votes”. He also said they would certainly determine their next course of action in consultation with the grassroots level leaders.

For the poll debacle, the BNP has blamed “vote dacoity” in connivance with the Election Commission, the police and the administration.

The AL-led Grand Alliance secured a landslide victory, picking up 288 out of 299 seats, while Oikyafront candidates could garner only eight. The Oikyafront, where the BNP is the major partner, has decided that its winning candidates would not take oath. It has sought fresh elections under a non-partisan neutral government.