Friday, April 19, 2019

A sense of relief and elation at the EC as ‘no country rejected election results’

  • Staff Correspondent, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2019-01-04 06:05:51 BdST

bdnews24

An air of accomplishment and relief permeated the Election Commission on Thursday after the end of parliamentary elections marred by deadly violence and allegations of widespread rigging and other irregularities.

Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda and his colleagues looked relieved as they attended a “Pitha Utsab” or festival of traditional winter cakes at the commission headquarters in Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar after around four hectic months.

In addition to the other arrangements at the event, the employees of the EC also barbecued fish they hooked from a water body on the commission premises.

Addressing the programme, CEC Huda claimed no country in the world rejected the results of the Dec 30 elections swept by the ruling Awami League.

He congratulated the EC officials on organising a “successful election”.

The new MPs of the party and its allies took oath earlier on Thursday.

Huda, who had studied in Russia, said, “We’ve sent an election message from Siberia to the banks of the Volga river, Pacific Ocean, America, Europe – everywhere.

“Has any country or any organisation in the world spoken against the polls or the Election Commission?” he asked his colleagues.

“It’s your (EC officials’) triumph, success,” he added.   

At least 21 people died in election violence after the campaign had started. Seventeen of them were killed in clashes or attacks on the election day and most of them were supporters of the Awami League.

The opposition alliances led by the BNP have rejected the results alleging that the government rigged the vote in connivance with the EC, law-enforcing agencies and the administration.

The ruling party denied the allegations of rigging and intimidation. Citing the deaths of its supporters, it said the BNP and its allies brought the allegations in a bid to make the election controversial and when the attempt failed, they unleashed violence.

The US, the European Commission, the UK and Canada have assured the new government of continued support but asked the EC to investigate the “credible” allegations of irregularities.