BNP in talks about nat'l council
The BNP national standing committee met last night to finalise the roadmap for the party's national council, likely to be held in March.
The meeting began around 9:00pm at the BNP chief's Gulshan office, with Chairperson Khaleda Zia in the chair. It was underway when this report was filed at 10:00pm.
The committee will decide whether the party would take part in the upcoming union parishad polls unilaterally or under the banner of the BNP-led 20-party alliance, said party sources.
In the December 30 municipal polls last year, BNP mayor candidates won in 24 municipalities, while the ruling Awami League nominees won by a landslide.
The BNP alleged that the elections were marred by huge irregularities, vote rigging and intimidation of voters by the AL men.
The issue of decreasing prices of oil in international market was also on the meeting's agenda. At a press briefing this morning, the BNP might call upon the government to cut oil prices in line with the international prices.
The resignation of Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury as BNP vice-chairman might also be discussed in the meeting of the party's highest policymaking body, said a BNP leader, adding that Khaleda was unlikely to accept his resignation.
A former foreign secretary, Shamsher quit BNP last month, citing health reasons. At that time, he also questioned whether the party was properly following the path of its founder late president Ziaur Rahman.
The parting of Islami Oikya Jote (IOJ) from the 20-party alliance might also come up for discussion in the meeting. The BNP thought that the government was engaged in splitting the opposition alliance.
On January 7, Abdul Latif Nejami-led IOJ quit the alliance. However, another IOJ faction, led by MA Raquib, announced that they would be with the 20-party combine.