Ban appeals for peaceful conduct of Bangladesh's parliamentary polls

27 December 2008

On the eve of Bangladesh’s “highly significant” parliamentary polls, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reiterated his call for a peaceful electoral process in the South Asian nation, which has been beset by political violence and polarization in recent years.

“He appeals to all political parties to continue to demonstrate responsibility, participate fully and honour the will of the Bangladeshi people,” his spokesperson said in a statement issued today ahead of the elections, slated for 29 December.

“The Secretary-General wishes to stress that a stable post-election climate will be vital for the effectiveness and sustainability of the nation’s democracy.

“He urges all political parties, irrespective of their performance in the elections, to work together in a spirit of dialogue and compromise, to address the challenges facing the nation. Such cooperation should include an enhanced role for the opposition in Parliament,” the statement noted.

Last month, Mr. Ban set up a high-level panel, headed by his former personal representative for Afghanistan, Francesc Vendrell, to assess and report on the conduct of the last stages of the electoral process and developments in the immediate post-election period.

The three-member team, which also includes Bhojraj Pokharel, Nepal’s Chief Election Commissioner, and Aracelly Santana, the former deputy director of the UN Electoral Assistance Division, is currently in Bangladesh, following an earlier visit in November.

The team will report to the Secretary-General on the conduct of the electoral process and developments in the immediate post-election period, according to today’s statement.


♦ Receive daily updates directly in your inbox - Subscribe here to a topic.
♦ Download the UN News app for your iOS or Android devices.

News Tracker: Past Stories on This Issue

Bangladesh’s first ever computerized voter list completed with UN backing

As Bangladesh gears up for its first parliamentary elections in seven years on 29 December, the first ever computerized photo voter list in the south Asian country containing pictures of more than 80 million people is now complete after taking 11 months to compile with United Nations help.