EC will serve people, not political parties or politicians: CEC
12:00 AM, October 22, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:06 PM, October 25, 2018

EC rejects bid to alter polls code

Favours allowing people in school committees to contest

The Election Commission yesterday rejected a proposal for amending the electoral code of conduct so that people in managing committees of educational institutions cannot run in the general election.

According to the rules, a lawmaker can hold the chairman post of managing committees of four educational institutions in his area. Besides, persons nominated by an MP can also hold different posts in managing committees of other educational institutions. 

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Headed by Election Commissioner Kabita Khanam, the EC's reform committee on law and rules placed various reform proposals on making changes to the electoral code of conduct to make it time-befitting.

In its proposal, the reform committee said prospective candidates or a member of a registered political party running for the polls would not be able to hold posts in the managing committees during the pre-election period.

The committee argued that most of the polling officials were being recruited from different educational institutions. If the political leaders were in the post of chairman or member in the managing committees of educational institutions, they would try to influence the polling officials directly or indirectly.

However, in the meeting at the Nirbachon Bhaban in the city's Agargaon, the EC yesterday approved two proposals of the reform committee that said animals could not be used to carry out election campaigns and clothes could not be used as election posters, EC Secretary Helaluddin Ahmed told reporters after the meeting.

Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda presided over the meeting, while three other commissioners Rafiqul Islam, Kabita Khanam and Shahadat Hossain Chowdhury and senior officials of the EC were present. Another Election Commissioner Mahbub Talukdar was not present. He was abroad.  

EC TO MEET PRESIDENT

The chief election commissioner and four other commissioners are scheduled to call on President Abdul Hamid on November 1 at the Bangabhaban.

Talking to The Daily Star, president's Press Secretary Joynal Abedin said the commissioners would meet Hamid at 4:00pm.

Briefing reporters at the EC yesterday, its Secretary Helaluddin said the EC would announce the polls schedule after the meeting with the president. “The Election Commission will declare the election schedule on approval from the president.”  

'EC TO SERVE ONLY PEOPLE'

At a programme in the capital yesterday, CEC KM Nurul Huda asked the EC officials not to “entertain” political parties or politicians but to serve the people.

On the use of EVMs, he said, “The days of guarding the ballots the whole night have gone, and the Election Commission has to move towards the use of EVMs gradually.”

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