REHAB polls set for July 30 | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 17, 2011 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 17, 2011

REHAB polls set for July 30

The Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB) has declared its election schedule for 2011-12 amid a growing controversy over the election time and an anomalous voter list.
The polls have been fixed for July 30 to elect an executive council for the next two years and only shareholders and directors of member companies will be eligible to vote, said SM Nurul Haque, chairman of the REHAB election board.
This time there would be no panel: the candidates will run for the election individually instead.
Earlier, the election scheduled to be held on March 27 last year was suspended on March 25 after the election board chairman, Taufiq M Seraj, also managing director of Sheltech, resigned over the voter list controversy.
On April 6 this year, four members of the REHAB executive council resigned to protest a year's delay in holding election and the committee's failure to protect the interest of the general members.
“We have resolved the problems that were holding the election back, including revising our constitution, while we got ready to develop an acceptable voter list,” said Haque.
“We have brought about major amendments to the REHAB constitution recently, which qualifies only shareholders and boards of directors of the member companies to be a voter. This should eliminate the major controversies over elections,” he said.
“Also, another amendment halts the panel system election. From now on, a candidate has to run the election individually, which we hope will reduce the chances of anomalies,” said Haque at a press conference at the REHAB office in Dhaka yesterday.
In previous REHAB elections, both shareholders and employees of member companies had been listed as voters.
According to the schedule, members have to pay dues to the association by June 1, while the last date of information collection for the voter list has been set as June 2.
A total of 994 member companies of REHAB would be able to vote if they clear their dues and submit authentic records and papers of ownership of a company.
The election board will finalise the voter list by June 22 and will start distributing nomination papers from June 23. The election board will accept nomination papers up to June 30, while the final list of candidates will be announced on July 16.
The election will start at 9am and continue until 5pm on July 30 and the results will be announced on August 6. On August 9, the names of the new office bearers for the next two years will be announced.
In response to a query, Haque said the REHAB executive council has formed the election board. This board will hold the election and would also ensure the acceptability and transparency of the entire process.
He, however, refused to comment on the performance of the previous election board and the association's failure to protect the interest of the REHAB members.
After postponing the election on March 27, 2010, the REHAB leaders had urged the election board to hold the election by April 3, which was not possible with the existing voter roll, which it said was flawed.
Later, the then 21-member executive council extended its tenure for another three months with the commerce ministry's approval.

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