Prime Minister

Keep faith in me: PM Sheikh Hasina

MNA National Desk: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called upon the people to help her face new challenges as she promised to move forward by drawing on past experiences with the her third consecutive government completing its first year.

In a televised address to the nation to mark the occasion on Tuesday, the prime minister recalled the lifelong struggle and sacrifices of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to ensure the people’s welfare.

Mentioning that the government always welcomes any peaceful democratic movement, Sheikh Hasina said it will not tolerate any destructive activity aimed at realizing illogical demands.

“Awami League is a democratic political party. We’re respectable to the Constitution. We believe in the rule of law. We believe that people’s mandate is the only way to bring any change in power. We welcome any peaceful democratic movement. But, we won’t tolerate any destructive activity aimed at materializing illogical demands,” she said.

The Prime Minister made the statement while addressing the nation marking the first anniversary of her current government formed through the December 30, 2018 general election.

State-owned Bangladesh Betar and Bangladesh Television simultaneously broadcast her address from 7:30pm. Private television channels and radio stations also aired the Prime Minister’s speech.

Sheikh Hasina formed the government for the third consecutive term following her party Awami League’s landslide victory in the 11th parliamentary election. The new cabinet was formed on January 7, 2019.

In the past, the people of the country saw arson terrorism and killing people in arson attacks by BNP-Jamaat in the name of movement. “The recurrence of those destructive activities won’t be allowed on Bangladesh’s soil again,” she warned.

Sheikh Hasina, also the chief of the ruling Awami League, in her about 30-minute speech called upon corrupt people to correct themselves. “I work for the general people, for the sake of people’s welfare. I won’t hesitate to take any step.”

Hasina said the ongoing drive against corrupt elements will continue. “I want to warn again-whoever the corrupt, whatever strong they are, they won’t be spared.”

The Prime Minister called upon the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to bring those involved in making illegal wealth to book whoever that person is. “It has to be ensured that the rights of the common people cannot be snatched by anyone,” she said.

Hasina said the participation of people is important to check corruption. This menace will automatically be eliminated if people become aware.

The Prime Minister also said the drive against militancy, terrorism and drugs will continue. “We want to establish a peaceful society, where there’ll be no envy and hatred. People from all religions and caste and creed will live in peace. All are performing their religious rituals with due dignity,” she said.

The Prime Minister said the government is always cautious about what it wants to do for the people of the country and what it has done for them. “You’ll also evaluate. But we don’t believe in crunchy pledges. We only speak about our capability to implement.”

She mentioned that there has been a huge difference between what was 10 years ago in Bangladesh and the one today. “The living standard of people has developed and the purchasing capacity increased.

She said the economy of Bangladesh now has got a solid ground where small shocks cannot stand in its way of this advancement.

Hasina also said the prices of all the essential items were normal except that of imported onion at the end of the year.

The Prime Minister said the main aim of the government is to create employment opportunities for the youth and it has set a target to create 1.5 crore jobs.

She said the process to establish 100 economic zones are going on. Hasina said a process is also on for strengthening all the forces of the country according to the Armed Forces Goal 2030. “We’re doing whatever is needed to make the armed forces capable for facing attack and aggression from external enemy.

Mentioning that the police and all other law-enforcement agencies have made remarkable success in containing militancy in the country, she said the people of the country are grateful to them. “We’ve taken appropriate steps to increase the capability of the law-enforcement agencies.”

“We give the highest priority to maintain good relations and cordiality with neighbors. We want to resolve the bilateral problems through dialogue. This is not our weakness, this is our tactics,” she said.

For this, the PM said, Bangladesh did not step into the trap of Myanmar although there were various types of provocation.

Hasina said a case has been filed with the International Court of Justice. “We hope, we’ll be able to have a clue for a permanent solution [to the Rohingya crisis) from this court.”

In the last one year, she said, the government has tried to give its best for the people of the country. “We won’t claim that we’ve been cent percent successful in all sectors. But we can say with all firmness that we didn’t keep any stone unturned. We’ll move ahead taking lessons from the past mistakes and experiences,” she said.

Talking about the unwanted incidents in some educational institutions last year, Hasina firmly said the government did not pamper anyone involved in those incidents.

“Administrative and legal actions have been taken against those involved in the incidents. Vested quarters had tried to cash in through creating anarchy by spreading rumours. With the help of people, we’ve taken quick preventive steps. We’re always alert about such rumours,” she said.

The Prime Minister admitted that dengue created panic across the country last year. A good number of lives were lost although the government had taken all kinds of measures.

“I’m directing all concerned to take all-out steps to prevent the spread of Aedes mosquitoes beforehand.”


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