Empowerment beyond charter

AL national council authorises Hasina to change party constitution and declaration

In yet another violation of party constitution, the Awami League national council has empowered newly elected AL President Sheikh Hasina to bring changes, if necessary, in the charter and declaration.

As per the party charter, the national council can exercise its powers to amend the constitution and manifesto.

Held on Saturday, the council approved some proposals placed by Hasina, also the prime minister, to bring changes in the declaration and constitution.

The councillors then mandated Hasina to bring further changes, if needed, sources said.

“The council gives the authority to Sheikh Hasina alone as the Awami League does not have central working committee. On formation of the committee, it will exercise its powers,” another source said.

Asked whether it runs counter to the party charter, advocate Rahmat Ali, the chief election commissioner at the council, said the council can do it. The council did nothing against the party constitution.

The AL council as par the constitution was supposed to elect nine members to complete the formation of AL parliamentary board. But the council empowered Hasina to pick three or four members to complete the formation, the sources added.

AKM Mozammel Huq, who was an election commissioner at the council, said the council elected some leaders, including Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury, Amir Hossain Amu, Tofail Ahmed, Suranjit Sengupta and Obaidul Quader as members of the board.

“Another three or four members will be included in the board to complete its formation.”

AL president and general secretary are ex-officio members of the parliamentary board. They also act as its president and general secretary respectively.

The parliamentary board nominates party candidates in the parliamentary elections, scrutinising their applications.

The AL council has also empowered newly elected President Sheikh Hasina and General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam to choose other members of the AL central committee, which is supposed to be comprised of members elected by councillors as per the charter.

The AL charter mandates the councillors to elect all leaders, including a treasurer, 13 members of presidium, its highest policymaking body; 31 secretaries, including three joint general secretaries and seven organising secretaries.

Source: The Daily Star