Sheikh Hasina re-elected for fifth term in Bangladesh

World Monday 08/January/2024 06:56 AM
Sheikh Hasina re-elected for fifth term in Bangladesh

Dhaka: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina won the re-election for a fifth term in the national election that were conducted on Sunday amidst the boycott by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) led by former PM Khaleda Zia, who is currently in jail.

Sheikh Hasina's party Awami League has won a fourth consecutive term in the 12th parliamentary election, marking the second lowest voter turnout since the reinstatement of democracy in 1991, according to the Daily Star.Bangladesh media reported that Awami League has won the polls but the official confirmation by the country's Election Commission is still awaited.  

The Awami League party hailed a significant victory for the fourth straight term, with Sheikh Hasina returning to power despite the ongoing anti-election activities by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), as reported by the Dhaka Tribune.

The landslide victory that the AL helped itself win in yesterday's polls means Sheikh Hasina will further tighten her grip on power as she is poised to go in history as the longest serving prime minister in Bangladesh,according to the Daily Star.

Notably, the Awami League won in five constituencies amid a boycott by the opposition BNP and 15 other parties.

Awami League chief Sheikh Hasina has instructed her party leaders, workers and supporters not to hold any victory procession following the announcement of the results of the 12th general election, Dhaka Tribune reported.

PM Sheikh Hasina and Awami League president has won the Gopalganj-3 constituency almost unopposed in a landslide victory bagging 2,49,962 votes in Sunday's 12th general election. The total number of seats in this constituency is 108.

Earlier in the day, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader expressed confidence that the Boat would emerge victorious in this election, the Dhaka Tribune reported.

"A victory of democracy and people of the country," he said.

"The election was held in a free, fair and peaceful manner, overcoming many obstacles. They [BNP] wanted to confuse the international and national friends of Bangladesh by spreading propaganda," he added.

Meanwhile, Awami League Office Secretary Barrister Biplab Barua highlighted that the turnout of voters in the 12th parliamentary election was satisfactory despite the "terrorism and anti-election activities of the BNP".

PM Hasina also accused the Bangladesh opposition party, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) of inciting violence in the country and said that they are against the development of the people.

"Bangladesh is a sovereign country and people are my power," she said after voting, adding that she hoped her party would win the people's mandate, which would give it a fifth term since 1996.

PM said, "BNP and Jamat did several arsoning and various other violent activities, such as burning train, burning vehicle, stopping people's movement...I would say that they do not believe in democracy, they are not patriots, and they are against the development of the people. Moreover, they don't want democracy to continue."

Hasina, 76, urged citizens to cast their ballots and show their faith in the democratic process, branding the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) a "terrorist organisation", Al Jazeera reported.
The 12th national polls in Bangladesh ended on Sunday amidst a largely peaceful environment.

However, according to the Daily Star, voters' presence was noticeably low, with many election centres hardly seeing any queues throughout the day. In many centres, election officials and polling agents sat idly with very little to do.

The voting began at 8 am on Sunday at 261,912 polling booths in 42,024 voting centres and continued until 4 pm with 299 parliamentary seats up for election, according to the Dhaka Tribune.

Highlighting the anti-election activities by the opposition party, incidents of violence were reported in different districts, which left one person dead in Munshiganj and many others injured in different parts of the country.

Reportedly, by the time the nation went to the polls yesterday, over 27,000 BNP leaders and activists were rounded up and over 1,700 were sentenced to jail in political cases in just about two months, according to Daily Star.