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CEC: Existing law is sufficient to deploy army during polls

  • Published at 07:39 am October 26th, 2017
  • Last updated at 07:22 pm October 26th, 2017
CEC: Existing law is sufficient to deploy army during polls
Bangladesh Army can be deployed during the next parliamentary election without the need to draft a new law, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) KM Nurul Huda has said. The CEC was addressing a press conference with civil society members, journalists, registered political parties, women leaders and election experts at the Election Commission Secretariat in Agargaon, Dhaka on Thursday. “The army can already be deployed during the election under the current law, but if we wanted to give them magisterial power then the law would need to be changed,” he said. “The existing law is enough for a free and fair election and that is why we should apply it appropriately.” The Election Commission arranged the press conference after concluding its three month-long dialogue with all the registered political parties ahead of the upcoming national election, which must be held by early 2019. According to the CEC, the time to take a decision on army deployment during the election is yet to come.
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“There are differences in the election process during the caretaker government and the current government. There is no scope for creating pressure or obligating the Election Commission from its activity,” he said. In the press conference, Nurul Huda also defended his remark over BNP founder Ziaur Rahman’s “reestablishment of multi-party democracy” in the country in 1978. The CEC said he had made his remark based on fact, and not “to make someone happy”. “When Ziaur Rahman, also a former president of the country, formed the new political party, there was no democracy in the country,” he added. “There had been democracy before 1975 (so) what I exactly said is Ziaur Rahman reestablished, not established, the multi-party democracy in the country.”
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