Thursday, March 21, 2019 | ePaper

No one-party rule

Oikyafront places 35-pt manifesto

Age barriers in govt jobs to go; balance of power between President and Prime Minister, stopping extra judicial killing, no hike in electricity and gas in first yr, increasing subsidies in agro sector and reform in health sector are major targets

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Jatiya Oikya Front (JOF) on Monday announced its 35-point election manifesto on the occasion of the 11th Parliamentary Election, with a pledge to ensure democracy and make Bangladesh a 'welfare state', so that one-party rule cannot take root in the country.
The election manifesto suggested balance of power between  the President and  the Prime Minister, lifting of the age barriers in public services, sans Armed Forces, Police and other forces, floating  national security council and welfare programme for  the Armed Forces.  In its polls pledge, JOF promised that the trial of the war criminals will continue and it will prepare list of martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the cause of independence under the supervision of the Army. The fake freedom fighters will be excluded from the list.
It also promised to scrap of controversial 'Digital Security Act,' in order to restore people's freedom of speech.
The JOF announced the manifesto at a press conference held in a city hotel on Monday.
JOF leader and Nagorik Oikya Convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna read out the the manifesto.      Contd on page-2 Col- 7
He said, the pledges so made would be implemented within five years if the JOF are voted to the office.
The opinions of all the parties in the Parliament will be given due respect and considered in administering the country.
It would prefer a Deputy Speaker from the opposition party and Parliament of two houses. A provision of the election-time government would be incorporated in the Constitution.
The manifesto suggested that none would the Prime Minister more than two consecutive terms. An Ombudsman will be appointed.
The alliance also promised that the price of electricity and gas will not be hiked in the first year.
Rural, small and cottage industries and all public and private hospitals will get electricity at concession rate like domestic household price instead of commercial rate, Mahmudur Rahman Manna said.
The front also pledged to increase subsidies in agriculture sector.
JOF promised to hike RMG workers' wage by 12,000 within two years if they  are voted to power.
The alliance promised to restore discipline in banking sector and will take stern punitive actions against those who plundered the  banks.
The front will cancel quick rental power plant and review Rampal thermal power plant.
Mahmudur Rahman Manna said, the JOF will take many social welfare programme, including introducing older aged allowance.  
It  will also reform the system of reserve seats for female in Parliament. It will make 20 percent female nomination mandatory for parties.
JOF will reform judiciary sector. It will establish High Court branches in divisional cities. It will also fix the retirement  age of the justices of the Supreme Court for 70 years.
Manna said that the front also promises mass reforms in the health sector.
The manifesto disclosed that 31 beds Upazila health complex will be increased to 50 bed hospitals, making  mandatory for the intern doctors to stay one year in rural areas, reducing cost of medicine and pathological tests, establishment of Ombudsman for discipline in health sector, and health cards for all citizens.
There will be unrestricted freedom of opinion, quashing the Digital Security Act,. Under the provision of decentralisation of power, 30 percent of the budget will be allocated for the  local government.
Apart from this, the alliance will build modern cities near the capital along with advanced civic amenities
There will be no quota for anyone other than disadvantaged and disabled.
It will introduce unemployment allowance for the educated unemployed for more than 30 years.
It will cancel the system of PSC and JSC examination; it will start DUCSU and other student Sangsad elections.
JOF will eliminate political influence from universities' residential halls by handover those to the administration.
The front also promised stopping extra-judicial killing.
JOF top leader Dr Kamal Hossain, BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir , JSD President ASM Abdur Rab and Krishak Sramik Janata League President Abdul Kader Siddique, among others, were present.

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