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Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina secures fourth term in election

Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina secures fourth term in election

Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina secures fourth term in election

Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina secures fourth term in election

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  • Awami League and its allies won 223 out of 300 parliamentary seats.
  • Bangladesh Nationalist Party boycotted the poll, allowing Hasina’s party to win.
  • Concerns were raised that this victory could lead to de-facto one-party rule.
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In a controversial election, Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina secured her fourth consecutive term as her party, the Awami League, and its allies triumphed in 223 out of the 300 parliamentary seats contested. Ms. Hasina is set to serve another five years in office. The Bangladesh Nationalist Party, the main opposition, boycotted the poll, paving the way for Ms. Hasina’s party and its allies to likely secure the remaining seats as well.

Amid allegations of a sham election by the BNP, Sunday’s results followed mass arrests of BNP leaders and supporters. Official figures showed a reported low voter turnout of approximately 40%, although critics argue that someone might have inflated even these numbers. In comparison, the previous election in 2018 witnessed a voter turnout of over 80%.

Political analyst Badiul Alam Majumder told the source that the election commission was inflating the voter turnout. “From different sources and media reports, we have seen that the turnout (provided by the election commission) doesn’t match with the reality,” he said.

Awami League:

Independents, the majority originating from the Awami League itself, secured 45 seats, while the Jatiya Party obtained eight seats. They anticipate the official announcement of the results later on Monday. This marks the fifth term for Ms. Hasina, who initially assumed the position of prime minister in 1996 and secured re-election in 2009, maintaining her position in power ever since.

“I am trying my best to ensure that democracy should continue in this country,” she told reporters as she cast her vote.

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Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader informed reporters that Ms. Hasina had directed party leaders and supporters to refrain from organizing victory processions or engaging in celebrations.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has estimated that nearly 10,000 activists faced arrest following a violent episode during an opposition rally on 28 October, which resulted in at least 16 deaths and more than 5,500 injuries.

HRW accused the government of “filling prisons with the ruling Awami League’s political opponents. The Awami League has refuted these allegations. People have raised concerns that this recent victory for the Awami League could lead to de-facto one-party rule.

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