Bringing all parties to poll a big challenge: CEC

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Dhaka, Feb 26: Newly appointed Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Habibul Awal has said ensuring the participation of all political parties in the election is a big challenge for the new commission.

“In order to make the election acceptable, it is necessary to make it participatory,” Habibul Awal told the media on Saturday (26 February).

The former senior secretary said he will try to carry out his responsibility with sincerity and devotion.

“After the Election Commissioners take charge, all the members of the commission will sit in a meeting and decide the next course of action,” he added.

He further said, “The Election Commission does not conduct elections alone, there are many stakeholders. It is possible to hold a fair election if they all cooperate.”

Mentioning that the role of media is important in elections, the CEC sought the cooperation of media and all other stakeholders.

President Abdul Hamid appointed Kazi Habibul Awal as the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners on Saturday (26 February), a day after the EC search committee submitted the shortlist of candidates.

Other members of the commission are former District and Session Judge Begum Rashida Sultana, former Brigadier General Ahsan Habib Khan, former Senior Secretary Md Alamgir and former Senior Secretary Anisur Rahman.

Earlier on 24 February, the EC search committee handed over the final list of 10 candidates to the president in a meeting at the Bangabhaban.

The nominations were finalised by shortlisting 320 candidates in seven separate meetings of the search panel. The committee also held four meetings with eminent citizens and journalists, many of whom repeatedly called for making the list public.

Later the panel published the initial list of 322 candidates but refrained from publishing the final picks, saying it did not have the legal authority to do so.