TIB seeks EC formation law

United News of Bangladesh . Dhaka

Transparency International Bangladesh on Wednesday demanded the government immediately formulate a law over the appointment of Election Commission before forming a new one to ensure its credibility.
In a statement, TIB executive director Iftekharuzzaman said, ‘The law can be formulated before the constitution of the new commission in February, 2017, if there is a political will.’
He said it is a matter of concern that there is no law in place about EC appointment despite having a constitutional obligation to do so.
‘Not only the section 118 (1) of the constitution is being violated by appointing the chief election commissioner and other commissioners based on nomination without formulating any law, but also people’s confidence in the election commission and the election system is gradually waning,’ Iftekhar observed.
According to section 118 (1) of the constitution, he said the president will appoint the chief election commissioner and other commissioners as per the rules and law regarding the EC formation.
The TIB executive director suggested making a law about the EC appointment involving experts and stakeholders and then constituting a search committee as per the law.
If such a search committee appoints the CEC and other commissioners, he said, it will be possible to avoid various controversies, including the lack of transparency and political influence, in formulating the EC.
Iftekhar said the jurisdiction of the search committee, qualifications and indelibility of its members, the conditions for appointing the CEC and other commissioners, their status, salary and allowances and other relevant elements can be included in the proposed law.
‘TIB calls upon for making the law on EC appointment before the formation of new commission in February 2017 through talks involving all the stakeholders,’ he said
The TIB executive director said if such a law is formulated it will help ensure a credible election process and enhance the possibility for holding a free, transparent and inclusive election.
Besides, he said, it will increase the acceptability of the EC both at home and abroad.
The tenure of the current Kazi Rakibuddin Ahmad-led Election Commission will expire in February next.

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