Parliament tenure until Jan 24: PM

Parliament tenure until Jan 24: PM

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday said the current Parliament will stay till January 24 making it clear that its session can continue until the election schedule is announced. “The tenure of the current Parliament is January 24, 2014 if the President doesn’t dissolve, and its session can continue until the announcement of the election schedule,” she said. Sheikh Hasina, also the President of the ruling Awami League, came up with the remarks in her introductory speech in the AL Central Working Committee (ALCWC) meeting held at her official residence Ganobhaban in the evening. The Prime Minister said there is nothing in the Constitution that Parliament cannot sit 90 days before the election or during its last 90-day time. “It has relaxed the compulsory system of sitting of session within 60 days,” she said. According to the present system, the gap between the two sessions of Parliament should not exceed 60 days. Shrugging off the opposition leader’s remark that October 24 is the last day of the current parliament, the AL chief said they should go through the Constitution. “The system for sitting of session is just relaxed during polls,” Hasina said adding that it is not there in the constitution that parliament session cannot be held in the last 90 days of the tenure of an ongoing Parliament. The Prime Minister further said that if the President dissolves Parliament, he can summon its session again with the MPs of the last Parliament. “In case of any emergency, the President can summon Parliament,” she added. In this connection, Hasina requested all concerned to properly go through the article 72 of the Constitution before saying or writing anything in this connection. Turning to opposition leader’s remark again, she said, “The opposition leader terms the October 24 as the doomsday and asked people to take preparation. If she calls it the doomsday, we then have our own responsibility to protect people from that doomsday and we’ll perform our duty accordingly. We have the sacred duty to protect the lives and property of people.” She also said the announcement of the election schedule is the responsibility of the Election Commission. “It’s their sole responsibility,” she added. Hasina said if people want to bring militancy, terrorism and corruption again in the country they can do that by casting their votes for the opposition. “If they want development, peace and prosperity, they’ll surely vote for the Awami League.” Listing her government’s development projects, including food safety net, providing free textbooks, stipend, subsidy on agriculture and subsidy cards setting up of community clinics, allowing opening bank account by farmers at Tk 10 only, development in the power and energy sector, Hasina claimed that the present government has ensured the country’s overall development. “If people want to see these development works to go on, then they’ll cast their votes for AL,” she said. – UNB

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