[Dhaka Correspondent] The government-backed faction of BNP will convene a council session to amend the party constitution ahead of the deadline set by Election Commission for registration. Acting secretary general of the faction, M Hafiz Uddin Ahmad, told newsmen at his Dhaka residence Thursday that they would complete the process ahead of the deadline for party registration hoping that the changes would reflect the desire of the party leaders and activists.
Hafiz claimed that the move had no relations with chief election commissioner’s remarks on party registration though he supported the commission’s views, “We will make changes in the party constitution realizing the need in the interest of the party. Our chairperson Khaleda Zia also prefers reforms. Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan placed a reform package much before EC asked for it. We will do it in our own interest, not at the instruction of anybody or to satisfy anyone.”
“We will drop the undemocratic provisions from the party constitution,” Hafiz said and regretted that whatever [democratic] was there in the constitution had not been followed till date, “The standing committee is supposed to meet once a month and council session should be held every two years but nothing was done.” He claimed that Awami League had also supported the statement made by CEC Tuesday on the need for democratization of political parties.
Holding the clipping of a news report published in a Bangla daily sometime in 1987, Hafiz said, “The claim of a small clique in BNP that there is no provision for an acting chairperson in BNP is not true. Mirza Golam Hafiz issued a statement as acting chairperson and it was published in newspapers.”
Asked why they were not vocal for in-party democratization in the past, Hafiz said, “All in the party are responsible for it and the seniors have more responsibilities. But it is better late than never.” He said BNP leaders were consulting lawyers over legal steps to free the detained chairperson of the party.
Hafiz apprehended a severe food crisis by March 2008 and asked the government to build up enough stock of grains to avert any possible crisis. He also thanked the lending agencies for extending assistance to the cyclone victims.