Awami League will elect all local governments including upazilas without party symbols to avoid conflicts at the grass root level and restore order in the party. The central leaders of the party said that the party will not support any particular candidate in these elections. As a result of such a decision, they believe that a qualified leadership of the party will come out at the local level through the competition.
Last Monday, Awami League’s central executive council meeting at Ganabhaban unanimously decided not to allocate party symbols in the local government level elections. Prior to 2015, there was no provision for party symbol nomination in local government elections. After amending the law in this regard, party symbols were also included in the local government elections.
Various speculations are going on about this decision of the first meeting of the central executive of the party after the 12th national parliament election. A mixed reaction is seen at the local level. In response to the question why this decision, the central leaders of the party are bringing forward the issue of discipline.
Awami League’s joint general secretary AFM Bahauddin Nashim said, ‘One will be elected directly on the boat mark, with the party’s symbol. If the party leaders and activists speak against the boat and want votes against it, then I think it becomes the most harmful. We should also seriously consider whether it loses popularity among the common people in the future.’
Jahangir Kabir Nanak, a member of the presidium of the party, said, ‘Will there be a party symbol or not? Whether it is good or bad, we discussed these issues at length in the central meeting. A point that came up in the discussion is that it is better for everything if there are no party symbols at this point.’
The central leaders of the party also said that the party will not support any particular candidate for the sake of developing qualified leadership.
AFM Bahauddin Nashim said, “Even if there is no election on behalf of the party, everyone will vote for the popular candidate of their choice.” That opportunity remains with everyone.’
Jahangir Kabir Nanak said, ‘Even though we are not giving the party symbol, even though the party is not giving nominations, that is, there is no party-wise election, there is no opportunity for the party to support anyone. Now let’s see what the local MP will do.’
After the new decision taken in the experience of the 12th National Parliament election, the leaders say, if necessary, this decision will be re-evaluated in the future.
The Election Commission (EC) has announced the schedule of 233 elections including Comilla City Corporation by-elections, general elections in Mymensingh City Corporation and some unions and wards including 9 municipalities. Voting in these elections will be held on March 9.
Also, upazila parishad elections are starting from the end of next April.