Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed refused any possibility of dialogue with BNP or a fresh polls before this government runs full five years of its tenure.
Tofail, also a senior leader of the ruling Awami League, made the comments to the press after Ambassador of the European Union (EU) William Hanna held a meeting with him Wednesday at the Ministry of Commerce as part of their post-poll move for bringing the two rival political camps to the negotiating table.
Replying to a query Tofail said the term of the present government is elected for five years, and hence there is no possibility of holding election before end of the term is there. “We will run our work according to the electoral manifesto under the able leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina,” he added.
Regarding dialogue he again said, “Dialogue is not our concern, the foreigners talk about it. But they are making no pressure upon the government to hold dialogue rather the high commissioners and ambassadors of different countries are greeting the new government, while many countries have also greeted the government”. The minister hoped that the government won’t face any pressure from abroad in the next five years.
However, in pursuance of the European Parliament resolution on Bangladesh’s political crisis over polls, William Hanna said he talked with the minister the matter of holding a “meaningful” political dialogue and the imperative of an inclusive election.
Fakhrul wants power handover to caretaker
Meanwhile, pposition BNP alleged that the government is repressing political opponents by using state tools and asked it to abdicate power to a non-party administration for fair polls through dialogue.
“Save the country and its people. Otherwise, you will have to face dire consequences like autocrats,” BNP acting secretary-general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said in a latest warning to the government at a press conference at the party’s Nayapaltan central office Wednesday.
He said the January 5 election was not acceptable to the countrymen as well as to the international community and that there is no democracy and rule of law here as the funeral of democracy began from the voting day.
“The government has closed the door on the opposition’s politics and is carrying out killings and forced disappearances in the way of state terrorism. Those who hold differing views are being tortured in false cases. Such incident happens during lawlessness in a democratic country.”
This was the first press conference addressed by Fakhrul at the party’s headquarters after nearly three months as he reportedly went into hiding on October 30 to evade capture. He alleged that human rights are being violated with extrajudicial killings, abductions, false cases against opposition leaders and activists and jailing them. “Stop politics of vengeance, killings and forced disappearances and come to the path of liberal democracy. Release our leaders and activists.”
Nearly 187 leaders and activists of the BNP-led 18-party alliance were made disappeared and 294 killed by law-enforcers and ruling-party men in the last three months, he claimed. “Even, 10 people were killed in the last 10 days.”
He demanded that the government launch a fair probe into the incidents. “International rights organisations should come forward and probe the matter.”
“The administration and law-enforcement agencies are under the government’s tutelage. It is using the state machinery to oppress and torture the countrymen. This is our biggest concern,” Fakhrul further claimed.
Source: Weekly Holiday