Terming the ongoing city polls farcical, BNP has rejected the polls in both city corporations under Dhaka.
A policymaker of the main political opposition, also a former law minister, Moudud Ahmed, said at a press briefing on Tuesday afternoon: “We hereby withdraw from the polls. We reject these polls as they have turned into a farce.”
Flanked by BNP-backed mayoral candidate for Dhaka north Tabith Awal and Afroza Abbas, wife of Dhaka south candidate Mirza Abbas, Moudud alleged the ruling Awami League had usurped the citizens’ right to vote soon after the party’s Chittagong unit made a similar announement rejecting the elections.
BNP’s Chittagong mayoral candidate Manjur Alam also announced his retirement from politics while rejecting the polls.
Alleging widespread rigging and irregularities, Moudud said: “The polls have become meaningless. The ruling party men had forcibly taken over almost all the polling centres in Dhaka.”
“Local Awami League leaders and activists have assaulted our agents and barred them from entering polling centres with the help of obliging law enforcement agency members and a submissive Election Commission.”
“Under the circumstances, we have decided to boycott the farcical polls,” Moudud declared.
He said: “We participated in the polls as part of our ongoing campaign to restore democracy. But vote rigging has already proved that restoring democracy is impossible under the Awami League government.”
Criticising the Election Commission, he said: “We had feared the election office would not perform its duty properly in order to satisfy the government.”
“We requested the commission authorities several times to ensure a level-playing field but to no avail.”
Source: Dhaka Tribune