January 06, 2010

The Forgotten Pledges Of BNP

Shakhawat Liton lists the forgotten pledges of Bangladesh's major opposition BNP, which started boycotting parliament on the issue of front row seating arrangement in the House:
  • After taking oath as an MP, Khaleda on January 15 announced her party deputies will attend parliament from its inaugural sitting and play a constructive role.
  • As the leader of the opposition, Khaleda's poor participation in the House proceedings shows her lack of interests to parliament. The opposition lawmakers joined 23 out of total 87 sittings of the ninth parliament, while Khaleda joined only three.
  • The party has yet to elect the deputy leader of the opposition who could have led the opposition bench in parliament in absence of Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia.
  • The BNP Parliamentary Party (BNPPP) did not hold any meeting for over 10 months. As a result, the party deputies could not discuss their parliamentary strategies.
  • The manifesto BNP says none of the lawmakers can remain absent for more than 30 consecutive sittings without leave of the House.
  • BNP lawmakers, who were made chiefs of two parliamentary standing committees, did not hold meeting of the committees for a few months since their formation.
This says how BNP is serious about democracy. However they have placed a ten point demand which has to be met as a precondition for their return:

The 10-point demands include strengthening security of BNP Chairperson Khaldea Zia, withdrawal of 'politically motivated' cases filed during the caretaker regime against the BNP chief, party Senior Vice-Chairman Tarique Rahman and other leaders, dropping the decision to cancel the lease of Khaleda's cantonment residence, arresting prices of essentials, improving law and order situation, stopping tender manipulation and giving two more chairs of the parliamentary bodies.

Some of the solutions to the demands lay in the hand of the judiciary and some are vague like improving law and order situation. So it seems the party has no intention to get back to the parliament. I suggest the MPs should stop taking perks and facilities from the government for the service they have not rendered for the citizens.


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