[Dhaka Correspondent] Awami League acting president, Zillur Rahman, Tuesday termed the sudden announcement of Saifur Rahman assuming the post of acting chairman and Hafizuddin Ahmed acting secretary general of BNP Monday night as a “midnight coup,” and straightway dismissed any possibility of the same thing happening to his party.
“Newspapers have termed the incident a midnight coup. It was really a coup carried out at midnight,” Zillur told newsmen at his Dhaka residence. He said leaders and activists of AL were united under the leadership of the party president, Sheikh Hasina, so there was no possibility of such an incident taking place in AL. When asked whether AL would be benefited by the coup in BNP which is its bitter rival, the AL leader replied that his party never wanted such a benefit.
“Delwar and Hannan Shah are missing. We will know the details of the incident after we hear their comments,” he said, adding that there might be some mystery behind the incident. He also said that there was no internal or external pressure on his party.
Zillur softened his earlier stand on not participating in the next general election without Hasina’s release from prison, “Election is far away and the party’s council and working committee will take the decision in this regard before the polls.”
In the past, Zillur several times rigidly expressed the AL’s decision not to contest the upcoming national elections with the party’s president in jail.
Replying to a query, he said that AL-led alliance would oppose the participation of the war criminals and religion-based political parties in the polls, “Jamaat is a party of war criminals. We will urge Election Commission not to allow Jamaat and other religion-based political parties either to be registered or contest the polls.”
21-member AL committee, formed to participate in the dialog with Election Commission, decided that the party would ask the EC to amend the Representation of Peoples Order, 1972. AL will oppose EC’s draft proposal that wants to introduce a new order and scrap the existing order.
“We will ask Election Commission to bring about necessary amendments in the RPO, 1972 instead of enacting a new order after scrapping it,” committee convener, Tofail Ahmed, told newsmen during a meeting at AL chief’s Dhanmondi office. He said that the process of preparing a draft proposal for the dialog was going on and it would be finalized after approval of AL’s central working committee. The committee will sit with representatives of civil society to discuss the draft Wednesday.
Election Commission on October 18 invited the AL to sit for a dialog on November 4, as part of its ongoing dialog with political parties.