The BNP yesterday alleged that the government made all preparations for influencing the Dhaka city polls to ensure victories for the Awami League candidates.
“The government’s intention is not to let the voters go to the polling centres [on the polling day]. To make it happen, they have taken various steps,” said BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
Speaking to journalists at the BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office in the capital, he complained that the government’s aim was to influence the entire election process and all the people involved in it.
The BNP leader said the AL already violated the electoral code of conduct. The ruling party held a rally in the capital on Thursday flouting the electoral code, he added.
“We informed the Election Commission about the incident, but they didn’t take any step. They just said the rally was organised without permission and this cannot happen.”
Fakhrul said his party wanted a free and fair election, and the EC make sure that all the voters would be able to cast their votes.
He expressed optimism that both the BNP mayor candidates would secure big wins if the voters could exercise their franchise.
BNP mayor candidate for Dhaka North City Corporation, Tabith Awal, said voters should go to the polling centres on the election day to exercise their voting rights.
Asked about their fear of occupation of polling centres by the ruling party men, Tabith told reporters that there was no confusion over the matter anymore. “They [Awami League] have announced that they will guard and occupy the centres. They have made this intension clear.”
The mayoral hopeful said the BNP had nothing to protest about or resist. The party’s main target was to protect the country’s democracy and the people’s voting rights, he added.
“So, at any cost we will try to encourage and help the voters go to the polling centres and cast their votes.”
Meanwhile, BNP mayor candidate for Dhaka South City Corporation, Ishraque Hossain, said they, along with the people, would resist any attempt to capture polling centres.
He was talking to journalists at his home in the city’s Gopibagh.