03:56 PM, December 29, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 04:33 PM, December 29, 2018

It’s difficult to revive 'dead democracy', says Fakhrul

BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has voiced strong doubt about credible polls on Sunday and said it is not easy to revive the “dead democracy as people have lost their confidence in the country’s election system”. 

He also said they could not carry out the electioneering properly due to continued arrest of their leaders and activists and obstructions by their opponents while the candidacies of their many candidates were annulled as part of a “conspiracy”.

In an interview with UNB’s Thakurgaon correspondent at his residence on Thursday, Fakhrul also talked about their election preparations, Oikyafront’s expectations over the December-30 election, his future role, his observation about the future of democracy in Bangladesh and some other issues.

“Now we’ve no expectation over the election. This election has become a complete mockery as what we’re watching every day in controlled news media. The state, the government and the Election Commission are working together to turn it into a mockery,” he said.

Fakhrul said Oikyafront has joined the election taking adequate preparations and fielded candidates in 300 seats. “Among them, the candidatures of 30-35 candidates were cancelled as part of a conspiracy. General voters have got scared in every constituency due to violence, state-sponsored terrorism and Awami terrorism.”

Asked whether organisational weakness is the reason behind Oikyafront’s poor election campaign, he said, “I get hurt when you (journalists) ask me such a question as you always want to see the weakness of opposition parties. We don’t see you raise any question when the government has blocked all the democratic paths and annihilated democracy. You also don’t raise any question about the regular arrest of opposition leaders and activists in false and fictitious cases for making the election field empty.”

The Oikyafront spokesman said they had tried to hold a pre-election rally in capital Dhaka on December 27, but they did not get permission for it from the police. “A reign of terror has been established in most constituencies of Dhaka. No civilised person can face such terror acts.”

Responding to a question who may be the Prime Minister if Oikyafront wins the election, Fakhrul said their alliance will take the decision about it through discussions.

Asked about his possible role if their alliance comes to power, he said, “I do politics and will work for people if our alliance wins.”

Replying to another question about their party’s plan if it gets defeated in the election, the BNP leader said, “There’s no question of win or defeat since it is not an election at all. A particular party is trying to snatch election victory by force and using the state machinery.”

About the country’s election system, he said people have no confidence in the election system. “The Election Commission together with the government has made election a mockery.”

Responding to another question, he said, “Democracy is now totally dead in the country. It's not easy to revive it.”

Fakhrul, however, said he wants Bangladesh to turn into a democratic one in the coming years.

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