AL Backtracks: Interim government head decided “through discussions”

The Awami League has again hinted at forming an all-party interim government to oversee the general elections but, backtracking on previous statements stating Hasina will head the interim government, says it is yet to clearly outline such administration and who will lead it.

The ruling party’s General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam at a press conference on Sunday said the head of the next election-time government will be decided through discussions.

Ashraf evaded comments on the media reports that the party’s Central Working Committee at its Friday’s meeting unanimously agreed that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will head the transitional government.

“We only talked about the election-time government system. We haven’t taken any names,” Ashraf said at the political office of the party’s President at Dhanmondi.

Asked who would head that government, Ashraf laughed and shot ack: “Is there a problem if I become the head?”

The Awami League spokesperson urged the BNP, which has been pressing the ruling coalition to hand power over to a caretaker government as in the past, to join Parliament to agree a framework on the election-time government.

Under current constitutional arrangements, the parliamentary elections will be held under the Awami League-led government as per the 15th Amendment.

The BNP has been agitating in the street for restoration of the caretaker government system claiming that polls under a party-backed government would not be free and fair.

The party has also threatened to boycott the polls if the system was not reinstated.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already said she has no reservations about a ‘compromise’ with the opposition on an all-party interim government but insisted that the balloting must be held in a democratic manner.

Hasina has also invited opposition leader Khaleda Zia to sit for dialogue in or outside parliament to resolve the political impasse and determine the polls-time government.

But the BNP leaders have been saying that they would respond positively if the government agrees to discuss a non-party administration.

In a written statement, Ashraf said: “The fundamental of our democracy is that a government elected by the people will hand over the state power to another elected government. Through the media, the Prime Minister has already given a formal proposal for talks.”

“Under the present Constitution, it’s possible to hold a free, fair and neutral election under an interim government formed only by elected representatives. The election-time government system tested worldwide is the only path of parliamentary democracy.”

Source: BDNews24