WE congratulate speaker and acting president Abdul Hamid on his election as the 20th president of the country. He has been elected unanimously by the ruling Awami League. So the scheduled election for April 29 has become redundant. However, the opposition for its part has not given its formal reactions to his election as president. He takes oath on Wednesday and embarks on a presidency that is set to be challenging. As the head of the state, he has potential clout worthy of being utalised in times of crisis.
The new president has vast political experience and has earned repute as an honest politician and serious speaker. He is perceptive and able to see the other side of the picture and has at times taken steps to bring the major political parties together in parliament. This is made even more apparent from the fact that his nomination by the ruling party has been more or less acceptable to all, including members of civil society and political analysts. Though the main opposition is yet to give a formal reaction, we hope it will be positive because as a speaker he did enjoy — somewhat — the confidence of the opposition bench.
The nation is at a critical political juncture, at the threat of being thrown into a state of paralysis due to the lack of any understanding between our two political campes. There can be no better time for the president to use his good offices and employ his constitutional stature to bring the parties together during this all-important election year.
Political stability brought on by dialogue and cooperation is key. We hope and believe that Abdul Hamid can play a catalytic role if needed and wish him well in his endeavours. No doubt, he can be a good influence on the polical parties and thereby help take the people forward at this crucial time.