Update December 9, 2015

Dhaka 2-13 pm, 25-October, 2020

No EC instruction yet on electioneering

Sumel Sarker

Election commission

No EC instruction yet on electioneering

09 December 2015, Nirapad News: The country’s political scenario is expected to boil with election fever as the candidates of December-30 municipal polls are getting ready to begin their campaigns on Wednesday.

However, the Election Commission did not issue any instruction on Tuesday regarding the electioneering, creating confusion among the political party-nominated candidates whether they can use their party symbols before December 14 when symbols will formally be allocated.

The EC was supposed to issue a notification on Tuesday on the date of electioneering commencement and clarifying whether the symbols can be used from Wednesday.

As per the election code of conduct, the electioneering in favour of any candidate cannot be launched three weeks before the election date.

Earlier on Monday, EC Secretary Sirazul Islam said, “The candidates of 234 municipalities can begin their campaigns on Wednesday (Dec 9) without election symbols.”

According to sources at the EC Secretariat, the Commission on Tuesday could not reach consensus on whether they will allow candidates to use election symbols before December 14.

Besides, the Commission even on Tuesday could not provide the media with exact data of valid candidates and the number of nomination papers rejected during the scrutiny that ended on Sunday.

As per EC statistics, a total of 13,634 mayoral and councillor aspirants filed nomination papers in 234 municipalities to vie for 3,147 mayoral and councillor posts of the local government bodies.

Of them, 1213 are mayoral aspirants against 234 posts, while 9760 general councillor aspirants against 2183 posts and 2661 are women councillor hopefuls against 730 reserved seats.

EC officials said some 900 candidates, including at least 154 mayoral aspirants, got their nomination papers cancelled on various grounds during the two-day scrutiny that ended on Sunday.

The aggrieved candidates can file appeal with the Appellate Authorities –Deputy Commissioner of districts — challenging the cancellation of their nomination papers.

The Appellate Authorities will have to dispose of the appeals by December 12, a day before the December-13 deadline for withdrawal of candidature.

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