Bangladesh holds local elections

Voters go to the polls for first time since army-backed government took power.

    Voters used digital technology to vote rigging
    [AFP]

    Nazmul Ahsan Kalimullah, chairman of the National Election Observation Council, a local monitoring group, said: "So far we have noticed no anomaly or breach of the codes of conduct".

    The elections are the first in the country's history to use a digital voter list with photographs to confirm a voter's identity and avoid multiple voting, problems which have plagued previous ballots.

    "This is the first opportunity we have in many years to elect a mayor and councillors in a free and unintimidating atmosphere," one voter said.

    Sajjadur Rahman, a deputy police commissioner in northern Rajshahi city, said voting had been "disciplined and peaceful".

    ATM Shamsul Huda, the chief election commissioner, said the local polls a "gateway to democracy".

     

    Candidates running in Monday's elections were registered as independents because Bangladesh's election laws curprevent political parties from directly contesting local councils.

    Candidates running in Monday's elections were registered as independents because Bangladesh's election laws curprevent political parties from directly contesting local councils.

     

    However, after a ruling last week by the high court, political parties will be able to field candidates during additional rounds of local polls in coming weeks.

    Officials say the ruling will help candidates prepare for a national election expected in December.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'Money can't buy us': Mapping Canada's oil pipeline battle

    'Money can't buy us': Mapping Canada's oil pipeline battle

    We travel more than 2,000km and visit communities along the route of the oil pipeline that cuts across Indigenous land.

    Women under ISIL: The wives

    Women under ISIL: The wives

    Women married to ISIL fighters share accounts of being made to watch executions and strap explosives to other women.

    Diplomats for sale: How an ambassadorship was bought and lost

    Diplomats for sale: How an ambassadorship was bought and lost

    The story of Ali Reza Monfared, the Iranian who tried to buy diplomatic immunity after embezzling millions of dollars.