Irregularities in EC hampering steps to ensure transparency


Staff Reporter:
Irregularities in Election Commission (EC) hindering the efforts to ensure transparency and accountability of the constitutional body, claimed Commissioner Mahbub Talukdar.
His remarks came on Monday while speaking to the media at his offices, a day after him and he colleagues handed over an "unofficial note" to Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda alleging of being left in the dark over the Commission's activities.
"A kind of arbitrariness is going on within the Election Commission Secretariat, which clearly breaches the Constitution, Representation of the People Order, the EC Secretariat Act," Talukdar said  According to him, the Secretariat is "not accountable in many cases" but the Commission is accountable for everything.
"It's imperative to conduct all activities of the Election Commission strictly in line with the rules and regulations," Talukdar said before adding a fair and credible election is not possible without proper coordination between the commission and its secretariat.
Alleging of irregularities over recruitment to vacant posts in the commission, he said that the Secretariat expelled 135 job-seekers from the test on charges of fraud, but did not initiate any punitive measures.
Over Tk 40 million has been paid to a Dhaka University department to conduct the recruitment test and grading the papers, said Talukdar claiming that "The chief Election Commissioner cleared it but there's no detail of this expenditure with the Commission. The Secretariat even does not know anything about it."
When the commissioners sought explanation in a meeting on Nov 14, EC Secretary Md Alamgir responded by saying that the issue was beyond their authority, this was however supported by the CEC Talukdar added.