Oikyafront promises to check rebirth of one-party rule

It also pledges to remove age limit for entry into govt jobs

17 Dec 2018, 18:57

NTV Online
Jatiya Oikyafront chief Dr Kamal Hossain speaks at a press briefing at Nirbachan Bhaban on Monday, Dec 17, 2018. Photo: UNB

Dhaka: Jatiya Oikyafront on Monday rolled out its 35-point election manifesto with various promises, including ensuring the balance between the power of the President and the Prime Minister, and introducing upper house in Parliament, to restore people’s ownership of the country if it is voted to power through the upcoming polls.

Chief of the alliance Dr Kamal Hossain unveiled the election manifesto at a city hotel on Monday also with a pledge to ensure democracy so that one-party rule cannot take root in the country, reports the UNB.

‘We announce the Jatiya Oikyafront’s election charter. It’s a manifesto of people. We’ve formulated it based on public opinion for people’s welfare. We believe people’s ownership of the country will be restored through the voting,’ he said.

Later, Nagorik Oikya convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna red out the 21-page election manifesto of the alliance.

‘If Jatiya Oikyafront gets the responsibility for governing the country through winning the election, it’ll ensure the welfare of the country’s all citizens. National unity, not the political vengeance, will be our main principle in running the government,’ he said.

As per the Constitution, people are the owner of all power of the republic, Manna said, adding that, not only those who will win the election, but also those who will suffer defeat and their leaders and activists will be the owners of the country if Oikyafront comes to power. ‘We’ll take the opinions of opposition parties in governing the country,’ he added.

In its manifesto, the alliance said a truth and reconciliation commission comprising noted educationists, social workers and lawyers, will be constituted to investigate and resolve the enforced disappearances, extrajudicial killings and false cases filed in the last 10 years.

‘The enforced disappearance and extrajudicial killings will completely be stopped. The security of citizens and their freedom of expression will be ensured,’ Oikyafront promised.

The opposition alliance also promised to scrap the Digital Security Act.

It said there will be no age limit for government jobs except those of police and the armed forces while a commission will be formed to examine the state capacity and implement a plan to introduce unemployment allowance for those educated jobless person above the age of 30.

The alliance said there will be no quota in public jobs, except for the backward people and physically challenged ones.

It pledged to carry out investigations into the incidents of corruption that took place under the current government and will bring those responsible for graft to justice.

Manna said they will also take immediate steps to resolve the water-sharing disputes of the common rivers, including Teesta, and Rohingya-related issues and other bilateral problems through discussions.

He also pledged that Oikyafront will form a ministry for minorities and stop repression on them if it comes to power.

‘An upper chamber of parliament will be created while article 70 of the constitution will be amended through discussion with all,’ Manna said.

He said they will also take steps for ensuring a balance between the power of the President and the Prime Minister, while deputy speaker in parliament will be elected from opposition MPs.

Manna also said the trial of war criminals will continue if Oikyafront forms the government.

The some other promises of Oikya front includes, stopping torture in police remand and arrest of people in civil dress, ensuring compensation for those have been made accused in false cases, showing zero tolerance to sexual and verbal harassment of women, preventing dowry, forming an independent commission comprising eminent citizens and opposition MPs for all important appointments, including those of judges, filling up vacant posts in government services by the next three years, examining the justification of formation of provincial government, investigating the plundering in banking sector, reforming the health sector, bringing down the cost of medical treatment, introducing health cards for all and appointing an ombudsman for bringing discipline in the health sector.

The alliance also pledges to revoke PSC and JSC examinations, introduce unified admission test in all public universities, reduce the number of reserved seats for women to 10 percent from 15 percent, but ensure nomination of at least 20 percent women candidates for the parliamentary polls, strengthen further the relationship with India based on equality, join the projects valuable for Bangladesh under the One Belt, One Road initiative by China, ensure freedom of press, encourage investigative journalism, announce regular wage board for journalists, ensure the security of journalists in discharging their duties, reduce call rates of mobile phone and internet, and send a new satellite into the space.

BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal president ASM Abdur Rob, Krishak Sramik Janata League president Abdul Kader Siddiqui, Gano Forum leaders Subrata Chowdhury, Mostafa Mohsin Montu, Dr Reza Kibria and Gonoshasthya Kendra founder Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury were, among others, present.