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Bangladesh: Caretaker Government Formed
Advisors expressed their vow to ensure a free and fair election
Golam Mustofa Sarowar (Golam)     Print Article 
Published 2006-11-01 11:12 (KST)   
Bangladeshi President Iajuddin Ahmed, now chief advisor of the non-political caretaker government, appointed 10 advisors on Tuesday, chosen from lists of nominees submitted by the main political parties.

The council of advisers will run government ministries until elections are held in January.

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"The country is passing through a crisis. An onerous responsibility is devolved on us. We will ensure free and fair elections," advisor and former Foreign Secretary C. M. Shafi Sami told reporters.

President Ahmed took the oath as chief advisor on Sunday, following the expiration of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party-led government's five-year term on Friday, the main political parties having been unable to agree on a candidate.

Under the Bangladeshi constitution, the caretaker government is charged with overseeing and ensuring free and fair elections, due in January.

"We will work together," said advisor Mahbubul Alam, an Independent editor.

Another advisor, Sultana Kamal, sought cooperation from the media in discharging their functions.

The 10 advisors are Justice M. Fazlul Huq, former Cabinet Secretary Akbar Ali Khan, Independent editor Mahbubul Alam, former Foreign Secretary C. M. Shafi Sami, former army chief Lt. Gen. Hasan Mashhud Chowdhury (retired), ex-IGP M. Azizul Haq, ex-secretary Dhiraj Kumar Nath, professor Sufia Rahman, Scholastica School president Yasmin Morshed and women's activist leader Sultana Kamal.

Expressing concern at election-related violence in Bangladesh on Monday, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan appealed to the country's major political forces "to work together to find a common ground for the elections acting in the interest of democracy and the welfare of the entire nation."

In a statement issued by his spokesman, Annan also voiced confidence that mediation efforts brokered by President Ahmed would "find a way out of the present crisis."
©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Golam Mustofa Sarowar

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