The five candidates nominated by the ruling Awami League for the five new reserved seats for women in parliament have submitted their nomination papers.
They submitted their nomination papers to returning officer Mihir Sarwar Morshed on Wednesday, the last date for submission.
The candidates are bdnews24.com’s social affairs editor A N Mahfuza Khatun Baby Maudud, AL’s women’s affairs secretary Fazilatunnesa Indira, Mahila AL acting general secretary Pinu Khan, its Chittagong unit chief Hasina Mannan, and deputy attorney general Fazilatunnesa Bappy.
AL assistant office secretary Mrinal Kanti Das accompanied the candidates when they went to submit their nomination.
As per election schedules, the nomination papers will be scrutinised on Dec 1, with December 7 being the last date for withdrawal.
While polling is scheduled for Dec 26, there is no need of voting since the number of reserved seats and candidates nominated by AL is the same.
Parliament passed the Constitution (Fifteenth Amendment) Act on June 30, increasing the number of reserved seats for women in JS to from the existing 45 to 50.
The ruling Awami League got all five new seats with its majority, under the proportional representation (PR) system in Parliament and the 15th Amendment to the constitution.
The AL-led alliance has 256 seats in the ninth Parliament, while the opposition alliance led by the BNP has 32 directly elected MPs from territorial constituencies.
Earlier, AL got 36 of 45 reserved seats for women, with BNP getting five and Jatiya Party four.
At a meeting held at Ganobhaban on Saturday night, the Awami League Parliamentary Board (ALPB), nominated the five as party representatives for the newly carved out women’s reserved seats. With Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina the chair, the ALPB picked the five from a total 179 aspirants.
The MP aspirants
Of the five, Baby Maudud, a career journalist and columnist, was born in Kolkata in 1948, and has been involved in journalism since 1967. Before joining bdnews24.com, she had worked with the Bangla national daily ‘Sangbad’, BBC, ‘Ittefaq’, Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS) and weekly ‘Bichitra’.
Hailing from Gajaria in Munshiganj, AL’s women affairs secretary Fazilatunnesa Indira was earlier the general secretary of Mahila AL.
Pinu Khan, a resident of New Market area in Dhaka, is the acting general secretary of Mahila AL.
Hasina Mannan was a councillor of Chittagong City Corporation between 1994 and 2000.
Fazilatunnesa Bappy, 40, is a prosecutor with the International Crimes Tribunal. Hailing from West Paikpara of Brahmanbaria district, she is also a member of the governing council of the Jatiya Mahila Sangstha (National Organization for Women).