Chief Election Commissioner Nurul Huda said on Thursday that the Election Commission (EC) is not responsible for low voter turnout in Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) by-polls.
“The EC is not responsible for low voter turnout. Responsibility goes to the political parties and their candidates,” he told reporters after casting his vote at IES High School at Uttara in the capital on Thursday morning.“Earlier, I told that the voter turnout might be low for two reasons – the first being a short-term election and polls will be held again in the next year,” he said, adding that the other reason might be that the voters did not anticipate a competitive election as some political parties stayed away from by-polls.”
The by-election was held for electing the DNCC mayor and counsellors in 36 extended wards in both areas of DNCC and Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC).
However, it had lost its colour due to polls boycott by BNP and many other parties. Most of the polling centres were empty in the morning as rains continued to batter the city on Thursday. Polling officials were seen passing idle times at the centres.
“It is hoped that more voters would turn out to cast votes later in the day. But it won’t be that so much big turnout. We have created a fair atmosphere for the election,” the CEC said, adding that there are no flaws in the electoral system.
“We have appointed polling officers, presiding officers and law-enforcers to oversee the election. We don’t believe that there is any shortcoming in our preparations.”