News Desk | Fri,27 September 2019:
Election Commissioner Md Rafikul Islam has said the by-election in Rangpur-3 parliamentary constituency will be he held in a free, fair and transparent manner.
“I hope that nobody will have any chance to talk about transparency in the Rangpur-3 by-poll slated for October 5 next,” Islam said while answering to various questions asked by local journalists on Friday.
Later, he formally inaugurated the training program of the voting officers selected for conducting the by-poll in Rangpur-3 seat at Rangpur Government College hall room in the city as the chief guest.
Presided over by Additional Secretary to the Secretariat of Bangladesh Election Commission Md Mokhlesur Rahman, its Joint Secretary Farhad Ahammad Khan and Rangpur Regional Election Officer and Returning Officer for Rangpur- 3 by-poll GM Sahatab Uddin addressed the training course as special guests.
Responding to a question, Rafikul Islam said stringent measures would be taken against those responsible people if they were found to obstruct entrance of polling agents or voters to polling centers and also against the election officials involved.
“At the same time, polling will be suspended if such irregularities were found at any polling centre during the by-poll in Rangpur-3 parliamentary constituency,” Islam added.
Rejecting BNP’s allegations about using electronic voting machines (EVMs) in Rangpur-3 by-poll, the Election Commissioner said that voting was held using EVMs in Bogra by-poll that was won by BNP that time.
“There was no talk about EVMs at that time. Hopefully, nobody will have a chance to talk about EVMs in the by-election in Rangpur-3 seat,” he added.
In response to a question regarding crisis of public confidence in the election systems, Rafiqul Islam said people all over the world are now suffering from mistrust and Bangladesh is ahead in this regard.
Responding to another question as to why the general public is not interested in casting votes, the Election Commissioner said that one major political party did not participate in the recent elections.
“This is why voters are less interested in elections as most of the contesting candidates did not go to voters,” he said suggesting for conducting more research on less public interest in voting as we need to get out of this culture of mistrust.