Bangladesh's 12th national parliament begins first session

The ruling Awami League has returned to power for a fourth straight term, with the Jatiya Party emerging as the official opposition

Published : 30 Jan 2024, 10:33 AM
Updated : 30 Jan 2024, 10:33 AM

The 12th national parliament has opened its inaugural session, with the Awami League forming a government for the fourth consecutive term.

The session, called by President Md Shahabuddin, convened at 3 pm on Tuesday.

The first order of business for the new parliament was to elect a speaker, and Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury secured the position for the fourth time. Shamsul Hoque Tuku was also re-elected as deputy speaker of the house.

The Awami League holds an absolute majority in parliament after winning 223 of 299 parliamentary races in the Jan 7 election. A record 62 independent MPs were elected to parliament this time, the vast majority of whom are Awami League members.

The Jatiya Party, the official opposition in the last two parliaments, secured 11 seats, the Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JaSaD) one seat, and the Workers Party got one seat. The Kalyan Party, once allied with the BNP, also won a seat.

Voting in Naogaon-2 was postponed following the death of a candidate. The election for the constituency is set to be held on Feb 12.

Members of the new parliament took the oath of office on Jan 10.

Custom dictates that the first session of parliament be started within 30 days of the official announcement of election results.

The ministers and state ministers of the new cabinet headed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were sworn in on Jan 11.

The BNP and like-minded parties boycotted the election. But Speaker Shirin is hopeful that their absence will not have much of a bearing on parliamentary proceedings.

The Jatiya Party has once again emerged as the official opposition. Its Chairman GM Quader has replaced Raushan Ershad as the leader of the opposition party this time.