Search committee formed for EC reconstitution

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A six-member search committee was formed to reconstitute the Election Commission (EC) to conduct the next general elections.

Appellate Division Justice Obaidul Hassan of the Bangladesh Supreme Court will lead the search committee, said a gazette notification issued by the Cabinet Division on Saturday.

Other committee members are: Justice SM Kuddus Zaman of High Court Division, Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) Mohammad Muslim Chowdhury, Public Service Commission (PSC) Chairman Mohammed Sohrab Hossain, former Election Commissioner Mohammed Sohul Hossain and Writer Professor Anwara Syed Haq.

The search committee will help reconstitute the next EC as the incumbent commission’s tenure will expire on February 14.

The committee has been asked to submit its recommendations before the President in line with the new law titled ‘Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners’ Appointment Act 2022’.

President M Abdul Hamid signed the bill into the law on EC formation on January 30 last. Earlier, the bill was approved in the Jatiya Sangsad (parliament).

The search committee is the outcome of a month-long dialogue between the President and registered political parties over the EC reconstitution.

The President previously started a dialogue with registered political parties on December 20 last year in this regard.

Most of the participating political parties, including the ruling Awami League, advocated for the enactment of a law alongside the formation of a search committee to ensure an independent and credible EC.

The incumbent government’s move to enact the law came nearly 50 years after the Constitution prescribed enacting a specific law for forming the EC.