With the election heat at its peak, the mayoral and councillor candidates of Dhaka north and south city corporations and their supporters conducted vigorous electioneering on Saturday as the curtain on polls campaign is set to fall on Sunday midnight. Braving the hot and humid weather, the polls candidates and their agents knocked the doors of the voters at different lanes and alleys of the two cities seeking votes for them in the April 28 elections.
Awami League-backed mayoral contestant for Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) Annisul Huq on Saturday started his electioneering with a rally from the city’s Tejgaon College premises. Speaking on the occasion, he said, “I have no disagreement on the decision of army deployment and the matter is totally under Election Commission’s jurisdiction.”
He exchanged views and distributed leaflets in Farmgate, Tejkunipara and Tejturi Bazar areas, and attended a rally near Awlad Hossain market at Tejgaon. Later in the day, he sought vote in favour of his ‘Table Clock’ symbol in Kachukhet Bazar, Kafrul, Bhashantek, Matikata, and Manikdi areas.
Annisul also attended a roundtable at The Daily Bangladesh Pratidin at East West Media Limited Conference room in the morning. Several leaders of BGMEA including its former presidents Tipu Munshi MP and Shafiul Islam, current board director Nasir Uddin also conducted electioneering in favour of ruling party-backed Anisul in different parts of city.
BNP-backed mayoral candidate for DNCC Tabith Awal started his campaign from a slum adjacent to Sonali Bank Staff College at Uttara 8-No sector around 8.30am. Talking to reporters during his campaign, he said, “We’re doubtful whether the election would be fair or not; our anxiety has increased as the Election Commission is dallying on the matter of army deployment during the polls.”
After electioneering in Uttara, he attended the roundtable at The Daily Bangladesh Pratidin office and said, the cooperation between the government and private sector should be increased to establish a corruption free city corporation. Later, Tabith campaigned in Malibagh Chowdhury Para, Khilgaon, Hazipara, Moghbazar, Farmgate and Geneva Camp in Mohammadpur areas.
Awami League-sponsored mayoral runner for Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC), Sayeed Khokon started his day joining the roundtable organised by The Daily Bangladesh Pratidin. Speaking at the programme, he said the Nagar Bhaban will be turned into a service centre for the citizens if he is elected in the city corporation election to be held on April 28.
“If I become a mayor, I’ll ensure service for every citizen. The Nagar Bahaban will be a service centre. I won’t let it to become a party office,” he said. Terming mass people his strength, Khokon said he will start working with the common people from the day one if he is elected mayor, and promised to reduce traffic jam in the city.
Later the day, he joined another roundtable organized by The Daily Jugantor at its office as a part of his electioneering for Saturday. In the afternoon, he carried out mass-contact at ward No: 42, 43, 44 and 45 at Shutrapur, Wari, Nababpur, Hatkhola and Dhupkhola areas while local Awami League leaders, activists and both rebel and party backed councilor candidates were present.
BNP-blessed DSCC polls mayoral candidate Mirza Abbas’ wife Afroza Abbas on Saturday started her electioneering at Mirhajirbagh in the city’s Jatrabari area around 9am. During the campaign, she accused the government of leading the city polls to confrontations through its aggressive attitude. “We thought the election would be free and fair, but the way the government is attacking our leaders and activists and threatening our polling agents it suggests that it’s trying to create a confrontational situation over the polls,” she said.
Afroza warned the government that its aggressive attitude will not bring anything good for it. “We neither want to rig vote nor will give any one to do so. We want a fair election.” She also exchanged views and sought vote in Gopibagh, Paltan, and Arambagh are in the afternoon. In the evening at a press conference, she alleged that the ruling party activists attacked Mirza Abbas’ election camp sensing their certain deafeat.
She urged the voters to go to polling stations on April 28 braving all obstacles and odds. CPB-BSD-supported mayoral candidate for DNCC, Abdullah Al Kafee started his electioneering from city’s Farmgate area in the noon. Attending Kafee’s campaign, CPB president Mujahidul Islam Selim urged the city dwellers to elect leftist candidates to get rid of two ‘big party’ centric politics.
Jatiya Party-backed mayor contestant for DSCC, Saifuddin Milon campaigned in city’s Purana and Noya Paltan, Segunbagicha, Kakrail, Shantinagar and Chamelibagh while JAPA secretary general Ziauddin Ahmed Bablu also sought vote for Milon’s electoral symbol ‘Sofa’.