External influence exerted on the election: CEC

Chief election commissioner Kazi Habibul AwalFile photo

Chief election commissioner Kazi Habibul Awal has said the elections have to be free, fair and acceptable to protect many things including the economy and future of the country.

"An external influence has been exerted on our election. They have spread their influence," the CEC said at the inaugural ceremony of training for the electoral inquiry committee members at the Election Training Institute on Monday.

The chief election commissioner said the controversy over the election in the country is unfortunate.

The political leadership over the fairness of the election has been split and this was not expected, he added.

Kazi Habibul Awal talks about the statements issued by the US ahead of the election.

He said, "The upcoming election can in no way be rigged. The elections in Bangladesh have to be free and fair. The people, as well as people from outside, have a demand to hold the election free and fair. We have to do it if I am to be saved, if our people are to be protected, if our garment (industry) is to be protected."

Kazi Habibul Awal remarked that the credibility of the election is not something tangible.  

He said, "In this regard, public perception is important. The people have to say that the election has been fair. If the people say this, then the election will be acceptable."

The CEC called upon the judges in charge of election duties to carry out duties with honesty and courage.