161 Upazila council polls on May 21 in second phase

161 local government units will go to the polls in the second phase

Senior Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 1 April 2024, 07:39 AM
Updated : 1 April 2024, 07:39 AM

The second phase of Upazila council elections is set to be held on May 21, with 161 local government units going to the polls.

The Election Commission finalised the schedule on Monday. The deadline for nomination submissions is Apr 21.

The polls will be held to elect a chairperson, vice-chairperson and female vice-chairperson in the sub-districts.

“According to the schedule declared for the second phase, the candidates will be able to submit their nomination papers to returning officers by Apr 21. The applications will be scrutinised on Apr 23 and the deadline for withdrawal is Apr 30. Voting will be held on May 21," Secretary Md Jahangir Alam said.

The voting will continue without any break from 8am to 4pm. District election officials and senior district election officials will discharge the duties of returning officers while Upazila election officials will be appointed as assistant ROs in the polls, Alam added.

The EC decided to organise the sixth Upazila council polls in a total of four phases. Following the first phase on May 8, the second and third ones will be held on May 21 and May 29 and the finale on Jun 5.

Even though there is a provision to run for chairperson with the party symbol, the ruling Awami League is not nominating anyone or allowing candidates to use the party symbol in Upazila polls. In that case, the party faithful will have to run as independent candidates.

The commission has already eased the procedure for independent candidates as they are no longer required to submit signatures of 250 voters with their nomination papers.

The candidates are also allowed to use colour posters alongside traditional black and white ones.

The commission also extended the time for election campaigns and increased the sum of the security deposit for the chairperson and vice-chairperson nominations.

The security money for a chairman aspirant has been increased to Tk 100,000 from Tk 10,000. The amount has been raised to Tk 75,000 from Tk 5,000 for a vice-chairperson aspirant.

Currently, there are 492 Upazilas in Bangladesh. The Upazila council elections were held on a single day in 1990 and 2009 after the local government body was formed in 1985 by the military ruler HM Ershad.

The commission organised the fourth Upazila council elections in six phases in 2014 and the fifth one in five phases in 2019.