President appoints Nurul Huda as CEC

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DHAKA : President Abdul Hamid today appointed former Secretary KM Nurul Huda as the new Chief Election Commissioner and a former judge, two former civil servants and a retired military officer as election commissioners.

“The president has appointed the chief election commissioner and four election commissioners from the recommended list of 10 names submitted by the Search Committee,” Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam told a press briefing at the Cabinet Division.

The four election commissioners are former secretary Md Rafiqul Islam, former additional secretary Mahbub Talukder, retired district and session judge Begum Kabita Khanam and Brigadier General (retd) Shahadat Hossain Chowdhury.

Alam said among the five, ruling Awami League proposed the name of Begum Kabita Khanam while BNP proposed Mahbub Talukder.

“I cannot remember which political party or parties proposed the name of CEC Nurul Huda and two others. We can say after seeing the records,” the cabinet secretary said while replying to a question.

The briefing came shortly after the president gave the appointments.

Earlier today, the Search Committee submitted its report to President Abdul Hamid recommending two names for the post of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and eight others for four Election Commissioners for constitution of new Election Commission.

The recommending other names by the Search Committee are former cabinet secretary Ali Imam Majumder as chief election commissioner and Dr Zarina Rahman Khan, professor of Public Administration department of Dhaka University, local government specialist Dr Tofayel Ahmed, former planning commission member Md Abdul Mannan and BUP pro vice-chancellor Professor Dr Nazmul Ahsan Kolimullha as commissioners.

The Search Committee headed by Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court formally handed over the report with the recommendation to the President at Bangabhaban.

The other members are Justice Obaidul Hassan of the High Court, comptroller and auditor general (CAG) of Bangladesh Masud Ahmed, Public Service Commission (PSC) chairman Muhammed Sadique, trustee board member of Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) professor Syed Manzoorul Islam and Chittagong University pro-vice-chancellor Shireen Akhter.

Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Safiul Alam, additional secretaries Md Abdul Wadud and Mosammat Nasima Begum also accompanied the search committee delegation.

The President thanked the search committee members for their role in picking up 10 names within the stipulated time.

On January 25, President Abdul Hamid formed the six-member search committee asking it to recommend two names against each position in the commission.

Earlier, President Hamid held dialogue with 31 of the 40 registered political parties on the constitution of the EC between December 18, 2016 and January 18, 2017. He took their opinion on forming the next Election Commission through a political consensus.

The search committee shortlisted 20 names from 125 proposed by 26 political parties recommending mostly names of former bureaucrats for the CEC post.

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