All BNP-backed mayoral candidates pull out of race

All three BNP-endorsed mayoral candidates for Dhaka north and south city corporations and Chittagong City Corporation have pulled out of the race alleging massive vote rigging by whom he identified as pro-ruling Awami League men.

The announcement came at an emergency press briefing at BNP headquarters at Nayapaltan around 12:30pm.

“We took part in the election with the hope that the election will be free and fair. But the government has made the elections meaningless,” BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed said.

“Our polling agents were either driven away or detained by the law enforcers,” he claimed.

The former law minister alleged that the law enforcers were deployed not to ensure smooth holding of the election but to harass the agents.

“People have no right to vote in the country,” he alleged.

While announcing boycotting the election, outgoing mayor Manjur Alam also declared that he was quitting politics.

The announcement came at an emergency press briefing convened at his main election office at Dewanhat in the port city at 11:20am.

“My polling agents have been ousted from different centres,” he told reporters.

Saying that he contested in the CCC polls for councilor and mayor’s office for six times, Manjur added: “I have no wish to take part in election anymore. I’m quitting politics forever.”

He said he would concentrate in social service now.

Addressing the same press briefing, BNP leader Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury alleged that rigging was so rife that “we don’t need to wait to see the results.”

“BNP is boycotting the election to protest the massive rigging by pro-ruling party men,” he announced.

Source: Daily Star