There could be a misunderstanding
Two election commissioners yesterday said there could be a "misunderstanding" about the EC's representation of some political parties' stances regarding the use of electronic voting machines in the next national elections.
Commissioners Md Alamgir and Rashida Sultana told reporters that they have documents of what the parties had said about EVMs in the recent dialogues and the EC would review those.
Alamgir said the EC would make the documents public after review.
On September 14, while unveiling its work plan for the 12th national polls, the EC claimed that 17 parties were in favour of using EVMs. The Daily Star however found that at least four of the 17 actually spoke against using the machines during the next polls, slated for late next year or early 2024.
Leaders of those parties were surprised to see that the EC put them on the list of parties that favoured EVM use, saying there was no reason for the EC to be confused about their stance.
The parties are: Zaker Party, Bangladesh Islami Front, Bangladesh Khelafat Andolon, and Bangladesh Khelafat Majlish.
EC Alamgir said many political parties submitted their written proposals but after the dialogue, some actually had changed their opinions on EVM and other issues.
"We took the decision regarding parties' stances in line with what they had told us during the talks," he said.
When asked about the allegation of some political parties that EC misrepresented their opinions, Alamgir said, "… They might have changed their stance after talks and they can do it."
"There could be some kind of misunderstanding. We have video clips of the talks. We have documents about it. We will review these and then make the documents public," he said.
On the other hand, Rashida Sultana said their analysis was accurate.
"We know we are right, still there could be some mistakes. We will review the documents."
Meanwhile, the EC yesterday removed Chattogram Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Mominur Rahman from his post as returning officer for the Chattogram zila parishad elections.
Mohammad Hasanuzzaman, Chattogram regional election officer, was appointed to the position after Mominur's removal, an EC notification said.
Rasheda Sultana said punitive action would be taken against Mominur after investigation.
The decision was made for the DC's "biased behaviour" as a returning officer, said Rasheda Sultana.
Mominur on Thursday sought blessings from all for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and prayed for her return to power in the next general election.
He also prayed for the victory of the Awami League-nominated chairman candidate of the Chattogram zila parishad elections.