JOF delegation meets EC seeking polls deferral

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A delegation of Jatiya Oikya Front led by Dr Kamal Hossain went to the Election Commission to place their demand of deferring the schedule of 11th Jatiya Sangsad elections by one month.

The delegation is meeting with the commission led by chief election commissioner KM Nurul Huda.

The Oikya Front on Tuesday sent a letter to the commission seeking time for Wednesday to meet the commission for deferment of the polls by a month.

After a meeting of the front steering committee at its chief Kamal Hossain’s chamber at Motijheel in Dhaka, Bangladesh Nationalist Party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir told reporters that Kamal Hossain along with the steering committee members would hold a meeting with the commission today.

‘The Election Commission, I think, failed to take steps for holding a free, fair and credible election. The commission should have talked to political parties before the announcement of the polls schedule,’ he said.

The Oikya Front spokesman said that they were upset as the commission fixed December 30 for the polls without any discussion with the political parties.

‘We think it’s extremely essential to accept our demand for delaying the elections by one month,’ he added.

He said that international election observers might have hardly any scope for observing the elections if held on December 30 as they would be busy because of Christmas and the New Year.

Chief election commissioner KM Nurul Huda on Tuesday had said that there was no way to defer the 11th parliamentary elections rescheduled for December 30 while Jatiya Oikya Front sought to meet the Election Commission today to for deferral of the polls.

Nurul Huda made the remark while inaugurating a training session for the returning officers for the polls in the commission headquarters.

The chief election commissioner and other election commissioners asked the returning officers to discharge their duties neutrally without any fear.

‘It will not be possible to defer the polls as we have already completed all the preparations for holding the elections on December 30,’ Nurul Huda said.

He also said that the commission would not defer the polls as Bishwa Ijtema would begin on January 11 and the commission needed time to publish the results of the polls by January 28, 2019, when the tenure of the existing parliament would expire.

On Monday, the commission rescheduled the 11th parliamentary elections for December 30 deferring the schedule it announced on November 8.

The commission revised the schedule a day after the Jatiya Oikya Front decided to join the polls and demanded deferral of the schedule by one month and the Jukta Front demanded that the polls be deferred to December 30.

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