• Monday, September 22, 2014

Jan 5 Nat'l Polls

EC to hear field staff's experiences

Plans workshops in 7 divisional cities

Staff Correspondent

With an aim to better manage future polls, the Election Commission (EC) will hear the experiences of the field level officials who were engaged in the one-sided January 5 parliamentary election.

The commission has planned workshops on "Sharing experiences regarding the 10th parliamentary poll" at seven divisional cities of the country.

"We will listen to them, and take their recommendations on how we can better manage elections in the future," EC's Acting Secretary Sirazul Islam told The Daily Star yesterday.

The first workshop will be held in Rangpur on August 29-30 and September 1. The schedules for other divisional cities will be finalised later, he said.

The EC yesterday sent letters to the returning officers, assistant returning officers, presiding officers and polling officers of the January 5 vote in Rangpur division to join the workshops. 

Officials from only those constituencies, where elections were held, will participate, said Sirazul.

The January 5 poll denied over half of the electorate numbering 9.19 crore their voting rights as 153 candidates were elected unopposed, while voting took place only in 147 constituencies.

The chief election commissioner, other commissioners and top officials of the EC Secretariat will attend the functions, to be jointly arranged by the EC and Strengthening Election Management in Bangladesh (SEMB) project of UNDP.

A boycott by the then BNP-led opposition alliance and other parties has made the January 5 election one-sided, and the poll drew huge criticism.

Seeking anonymity, several EC officials said where the election itself was questionable and unacceptable to many people, what would be the effectiveness of sharing experiences of that controversial election.

Published: 12:01 am Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Last modified: 2:39 am Wednesday, August 20, 2014

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