BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday warned that the country’s people will not let the Awami League government hold another farcical national election like the 10th and 11th parliamentary ones.
“Awami League is thinking that they will usurp power again by staging a farcical election in the same way as they did during the last two elections and thus they'll again exploit the people and loot their money and assets," he said.
Speaking at a brief rally before launching Uttara East unit BNP’s march programme in front of Uttara Public College, Fakhrul warned that the country’s people will no longer allow the ruling party to cling to power by rigging votes and manipulating the election.
“People have taken to the streets with a movement. We will take the movement forward peacefully. This time we and the country’s people won’t stage any farce in the name of the national election,” he said.
The BNP leader called on the leaders and workers to intensify the movement and drum up public support in favour of their 10-point demand, including the resignation of the current regime and holding the next election under a non-party neutral government.
“Our movement is not for only to go to power. The main goal of our movement is to get back the rights of the people, including the right to franchise and right to speak,” he said.
Stating that their party has been in the movement for 15 years, Fakhrul said they will remain on the streets peacefully until the AL government is unseated. “If we are obstructed, we'll definitely overcome it and put up a resistance together with people.
As part of the next course of the simultaneous movement, the BNP Secretary General also announced to form human chains in all metropolitan cities, including Dhaka and in all district towns on March 11 to press home their 10-point demand.
Referring to ruling party leaders’ comment that the next polls will be held as per the constitution, Fakhrul said the current government has amended the constitution at its whim, snatching people’s voting and all other rights.
“This government is going to arrange a stage-managed and rigged election. They’re repeatedly saying that the election will be held under this government. No credible and neutral election can be held under Sheikh Hasina,” he said.
The BNP leader said the country’s people will not go to polls under the current government. “So, this regime must quit, dissolve parliament and form a caretaker government and a fresh election commission to ensure a credible election.”
He also slammed the government for the price hikes in power, gas and daily essentials.
Fakhrul said their party’s many leaders, including joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, have been staying in jail in false cases and demanded their immediate release.
He said their party standing committee member Salahuddin Ahmed was acquitted by the Judge Court of charges of trespassing into the Indian state of Meghalaya.
The BNP leader bemoaned that the government has so far not taken any step to bring him back to the country. “We demand that arrangements be made to bring him back to the country.”
The leaders and activists of BNP and its associate bodies in all thanas under Dhaka south and north city corporations arranged separate rallies and brought out processions as part of their road march programme in all divisional cities.