BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has said the country’s people have seen what has happened in Cumilla City Corporation election. So, taking part in any election under the present government means giving it more legitimacy.
“You yourselves have witnessed what has happened in the Cumilla City Corporation election. We predicted it much earlier what would happen [in the name of election]. Because of it, we are not going to take part in any future elections. Joining any election under this government means giving it more legitimacy,” he said. “It’s now a proven fact.”
He was speaking at a discussion at Jatiya Press Club organised to mark the ‘Black Day’ commemorating the closure of all newspapers, except four state-run ones, on June 16 1975. A faction of the Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) organised the discussion.
Awami League mayoral candidate Arfanul Huque Rifat was unofficially declared the winner in the Cumilla City Corporation election held on Wednesday.
As per the results announced by returning officer of the polls, Shahedunnabi Chowdhury, Rifat defeated two-time mayor Monirul Huque Sakku by a margin of only 343 votes.
Sakku, however, turned down the election results and said he was defeated in a planned way by manipulating the results of a few centers at the last time.
He said: “There is no alternative to restore democracy if we want to save everything–our judiciary, administration, education and press freedom.”
Fakhrul bemoaned that though 50 years have passed since the independence of Bangladesh, the nation still could not ensure a system of peaceful transfer of power.
Fakhrul said the 16th June is a black day not only for journalists, but also for the entire news industry of the country. Country’s all the newspapers except four were banned on this day. It was also decided that the four newspapers would run under the government’s supervision.
With BFUJ president M Abdullah in the chair, the discussion was attended by the BFUJ and DUJ leaders and members.