MNA Editorial Desk: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has restated that the national election will be held in time with or without the BNP as she attended a press briefing after returning from Rome at Dhaka on Monday.
“We cannot do anything if the BNP doesn’t participate in the election. The election will be held in time,” Hasina said.
The BNP had stayed away from the 2014 election demanding a neutral polls-time administration, which they still want.
Now, the BNP has ruled out going to the election with Chairperson Khaleda Zia in prison.
“Nobody can do anything, if they don’t participate,” Hasina, president of the ruling Awami League, said referring to the BNP’s boycott of the 2014 election.
The briefing at the PM’s official residence was meant to brief the media on her recent visit to Italy and the Vatican.
Hasina attended a meeting of the International Fund for Agriculture Development governing council in Rome. She said the IFAD has provided loans for the rural economy.
On her talks with Pope Francis in the Vatican City, Hasina said the pontiff praised communal harmony in Bangladesh.
After reading out her written statement, she mentioned the launch of 4G mobile networks, lifting of the ban on direct air cargo to the UK as good news.
The Bangabandhu satellite will be launched sometime in March, according to Hasina.
She questioned the BNP’s rationale for assigning Tarique Rahman, himself a convict, to lead the troubled party in the absence of Khaleda who was jailed for five years in a corruption case.
She described the BNP as a party with broken leadership and asked whether it had any other member than Tarique to steer it through its bad days.
“The corruption case was filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission and court proceedings continued for 10 years. Our administration has nothing to do with it.”
She also addressed the Rohingya crisis at the press briefing and said Myanmar is delaying the Rohingya repatriation.
She said this at a press conference at her Ganobhaban residence in the afternoon. The press conference was arranged to brief the media about the outcome of her recent official visit to Italy and Vatican City.