He stated this at Monday’s press briefing at BNP's Naya Paltan headquarters
BNP has alleged that the Election Commission is blindly accepting ruling party candidates’ nominations and rejecting those of the opposition on trivial excuses.
The party’s Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi told the press on Monday at BNP's Naya Paltan headquarters that the rejections showed that the government is in full control of the Election Commission.
He alleged that the nominations of around 50 heavyweight BNP candidates – including party chief Khaleda Zia – were cancelled without any valid reason, while not a single Awami League nomination was cancelled.
“The commission thinks they are all saints,” he added.
“Although Awami League's former general secretary Syed Ashraful Islam has not signed his nomination papers, his nomination papers have been accepted.
“He is ill and now undergoing treatment in Thailand in a senseless condition, but his fingerprint and signature have been put in his nomination paper. Where did they come from? How is this nomination valid?” he asked.
“Of course we wish for his full recovery. But for someone residing outside the country, the embassy’s first secretary has to attest his signature. Ashraf’s nomination papers were attested by a local notary public, which is not valid.
“Syed Ashraf has no election bank account either, which is a requirement for campaign expenses. Then how can his nomination be accepted?”
Rizvi further said: “Awami League's Election Steering Committee Co-Chairman HT Imam is a negative character for democracy and fair election. He is doing whatever engineering needs to be done for this election.”
The commission scrutinized a total of 3,065 nomination applications on Sunday and rejected 786, approving the nomination papers of 2,279 candidates. Many of the rejected aspirants are BNP heavyweights. Some are Awami League rebel candidates.
“Even their convicted candidates have passed the commission's scrutiny. Civil Aviation Minister AKM Shahjahan Kamal did not submit necessary documents, and other information, but his nomination got through. He is threatening journalists not to publish this,” Rizvi said.
Asked what the party would do for the six constituencies where they no longer had a candidate, Rizvi said BNP would make a decision after the appeals process with the Election Commission comes to an end.
“We also heard from a reliable source that on the election day, Internet and mobile network will be shut down. Monitoring stared from today on the social networking sites. The Election Commission secretary threatened to file a lawsuit under the Digital Security Act if anyone criticizes the government,” he added.
The senior politician demanded the immediate release of all arrested BNP leaders and activists.