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The new government and upazilla election January 19, 2009

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, ELECTION, GOVERNANCE, local government, POLITICS.
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Upazilla election was always a matter of controversy over the last two years after the Election Commission expressed it’s willingness to hold the upazilla election to strengthen the local government. Major political parties were against holding of Upazilla election under the CTG.
But both AL and BNP failed to hold the Upazilla election during their tenures from 1991 though they were commited to hold the election in their election manifestos.

People in general perceived the upazilla election as their empowerment and they responded positively when idea of the upazilla election was floated.

EC once declared to hold the upzilla election in October 2008,but due to pressure from the political parties to shift it beyond the general election date, the upazilla election is then scheduled to 28th December 2008 with general election date on 18th December 2008.Though AL accepted the dates, BNP with its allies opposed the idea. It raised demand to shift the date of elections for 2 to 3 months more.

After hectic negotiations with the conflicting parties, Dr. Hussain Zillur Rahman and his team from the Advisory Council ultimately convinced the parties to participate in the elections. Accordingly, EC declared the general election on 29th December 2008 and upazilla election on 22nd January 2009.

Nation initially concentrated on the parliamentary election of 29th December 2008 and people then were not sure about the upazilla election.

In the general election, AL got the landslide victory. Few people thought that CTG may delay handing over the charge to the elected government and may wish to complete the upazilla election under their control.
But they handed over the charge.

People have seen that AL-led new political government has allowed processes of the upazilla election to be continued under the old leaders of the Election Commission.

It is one of the positive steps that new government has taken so far. It has scored high not postponing the upazilla election and not intefering it. If upazilla electionis held on 22nd January free and fair and if the Election Commission can exert its control over the election completely independent, it will not only boost the image of the government but also of the nation.

An ordinary citizen

Local government elections: political parties are at odds with the people June 27, 2008

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, ELECTION, GOVERNANCE, local government, POLITICS.
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Election Commission declared the local government elections in 4 city corporations and 9 municipal corporations to be held in August 2008. Though the Government wanted the political parties to support the initiative but major political parties are against the local government elections to be held before the general election.

But the local residents of the respective areas are showing enthusiasm in election work, the political workers in the local area are also start working and the political and local leaders are showing their aspirations to participate in the local polls. (more…)

All local body elections must be held before parlimentatry election December 8, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, ELECTION, GOVERNANCE, local government.
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Tofayel Ahmed, not the politician but a local government expert wrote an interesting article in Prothom Alo on local government elections where he argued that the parliamentary election is not a precondition for holding the local government elections.

He placed this proposition when the Election Commission is thinking to defer the local body elections after the general election and to be hold by the next political government. This is in contradiction to the earlier stand declared by the election commission that the local body election would be held before the national election. At that time different political parties opposed the idea.

In an earlier post we also argued in favour of local body elections to be held under the Caretaker Government to keep it free from political party dominance and to base it on local issues and agendas. We cannot expect it in a election held under a political government.

Another point which Mr. Tofayel raised in his article is to select the chairman or mayor of the local bodies on the basis of indirect voting by the members of the union parishad or by the commissioners of the city corporations/municipalities. This sounds new to us but if it is practiced in West Bengal where democracy is more deep rooted and more representative, our Government can judge the merit of the suggestion.

Professor Mujaffar Ahmed, a leader of civil society, expressed his opinion in favour of holding the local government elections in differetn areas as soon as their tanure is over and voter listing is completed. He argued that unnecesssary extension of the tenure to the unlelected persons will have no accountability and will encourage corruption.

An ordinary citizen


Parliament Election is not a precondition for local government elections[PA]

Local Government elections should be free from party politics November 12, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, ELECTION, local government.
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The present government is taking preparation for the election of the local bodies. These are in the urban set up the election of the city corporations and municipalities, in the rural set up the election of the union parishad and upazilla parishad.

Both the Awami league and BNP expressed their willingness to participate in the local body elections.

Though at one time AL Acting president Zillur Raman said that the present government should not convene the local body elections. It is not their duty, they should only do voter list and the national election.

Recently Zillur Rahman said that now it seems that Government is determined to hold local body elections. AL has asked its workers and local leaders to organize themselves for the local body elections. They were even discussing the probable candidates for the city corporations and different aspirants are started lobbying for their expected post.

Major(Rtd) Hafizuddin also expressed their willingness to compete in the local body elections.

The ordinary citizen like to see the least political involvement in the local body elections. Government should take necessary measures to make it free from party politics. The media also take steps not to give political colour to the local body elections. The media had a tendency to tag political identity to the candidates/winners, the practice of which should be abandoned. The public also should be encouraged to judge the candidates on the competency and commitment of the candidates to the development of the local constituencies, not on his party colour.

The people must come out of the illusion of the party politics specially in judging the members /chairman of the local bodies.

An ordinary citizen

Post Script: 13 Nov 07

The LGRD Adviser has said yesterday that government is thinking of conducting the local body elections and the national elections on the same day to minimize the cost of election expenditure. This is in contrast to the earlier declaration of the Election Commission that declared that the EC will hold the local body election with the completion of the voter list in that respective area. EC was also asserted that this exercise would give the EC the necessary competency to hold the election commission. To hold both the elections on the same day is also different from the practice of earlier local body elctions.

The ordinary citizen thinks that the election date should be determined by the EC and if LGRD ministry has any alternate proposal then it should place the proposal to the EC first.

The ordinary citizen also thinks that the same day elections will hamper the none political character of the local body elections that we are thinking.

an ordinary citizen