Dhaka, Bangladesh
BNP coalition nominations by Wednesday

BNP coalition nominations by Wednesday

Many new to poll games

News Desk Jatiya Oikya Front spokesman and BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir says that the final list of the opposition alliance's candidates for the 11th parliamentary election will be decided through talks by Wednesday. Fakhrul made the statement after a meeting between top leaders of the Oikya Front's member parties on Sunday, The meeting was chaired by Dr Kamal Hossain at his chamber in Motijheel. Participants included Fakhrul, Kader Siddique of the Krishak Sramik Janata League, Mustafa Mohsin Montu and Subrata Chowdhury of the Gano Forum, and Sultan Mohammad Monsur of Jatiya Oikya Prokriya. "You have seen us interviewing the nominees for the party in the past four days," Mirza Fakhrul said after the meeting. "We have met with the Oikya Front's other parties and the 20-Party Alliance." "Now we are in talks to finalise the list and hope to reach a consensus." Asked to estimate when the final list will be issued, he said: "Candidates will be finalised by Nov 28. That is the last day to submit the forms. We will finish it by then. If necessary we will make use of the time given to withdraw nominations." According to the schedule, the 11th parliamentary election will be held on Dec 30. Candidates can submit their papers until Dec 28. They will be scrutinised by the Election Commission on Dec 2. Candidates will have until Dec 9 to withdraw. The alliances will have to decide on how to divide up the constituencies by then. Fakhrul said he was hopeful about victory in the election. "I believe that if we can compete in the polls and the government and the Election Commission do not present any large obstacles, our victory is assured." He also criticised the role played by the Election Commission. "All of the parties and civil society - all those working on the election say that the Election Commission has not been able to prove their impartiality. We submitted a list of false cases, but have not received a response. We called for all these officials to be removed but the CEC says they will remain." "The things he said yesterday are horrific - 'the police are under our control and are following our orders' - this means that the false cases and harassment are under their instructions. That means there is no level playing field. But we will still go to the polls and continue to fight." The Jatiya Oikya Front was formed on Oct 13 with the BNP and four other parties under the leadership of Dr Kamal Hossain. The four other parties are JSD, Gono Forum, Nagorik Oikya and the Jatiya Oikay Prokriya. The Krishak Sramik Janata League joined later. (Inputs taken from UNB)

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