Bangladesh Awami League on Sunday (Feb 12) nominated former judge Mohammad Shahbuddin Chuppu as its candidate for 22nd presidential election. The Election Commission has received his nomination paper submitted by Bangladesh Awami League, a spokesman of the independent statutory body said. He added the EC would now accomplish the procedural formalities for his election by members of parliament, where the ruling party enjoys the absolute majority.
An Awami League delegation led by its General Secretary and Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader submitted the nomination along with Chuppu.
Awami League Parliamentary Party (earlier) entrusted Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina with the task of nominating their nominee for the presidency and she nominated Shahbuddin Chuppu as the tenure of incumbent President Md. Abdul Hamid ends on Apr 24.
The Awami League delegation came to the Election Commission Bhaban at Agargaon along with Shahbuddin Chuppu at 10.45 a.m. with the nomination paper signed by party's General Secretary Obaidul Quader as the proposer while it's Joint General Secretary Dr Hasan Mahmud seconded the proposal.
Under the Election Commission procedures the nomination paper was required to be signed by Shahbuddin Chuppu as well, as consent to his nomination.
Chief Whip Noor-E-Alam Chowdhury, Awami League Presidium Members Jahangir Kabir Nanak, Faruque Khan MP and Abdur Rahman MP, Office Secretary Biplob Barua, and Information and Research Secretary Dr Abdus Sobhan Golap MP, among others, comprised the delegation.
The Election Commission earlier set Feb 12 as the date for filing nomination papers for the presidency and 4 O' clock was fixed as the deadline.
Election Commission Secretariat Secretary Md Jahangir Alam told National News Agency of Bangladesh that the nomination papers would be scrutinized on Feb 13 while candidates could withdraw nomination papers untill 4 p.m. on Feb 14. On Feb 19, the 22nd Presidential election will be held from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Jatiyo Sangsad complex.
Election Commission officials and political analysts said 74-year-old Shahbuddin Chuppu's installation as the President now appeared to be a matter of mere formalities as main opposition in parliament Jatiyo Party decided to nominate none for the highest office.
BNP has no scope to nominate anyone since all their seven lawmakers in the 350-seat Jatiyo Sangsad resigned in December 2022 as part of their anti-government campaign ahead of general elections expected to be held in December this year or early January 2024.
Bangladesh Constitution prescribes President's tenure to be five years from the date of assumption of office. Incumbent President Md. Abdul Hamid assumed office on Apr 24, 2018 for the second consecutive term and accordingly his five-year tenure will end on Apr 23, 2023.
According to the country's Constitution, parliament members are voters in the presidential election, but if there is one candidate for the presidency, the voting will not be required.
A 1971 valiant freedom fighter, Shahbuddin Chuppu was born in 1949 in Pabna and initially began his career as a lawyer. He started career in the judicial service in 1982 as an assistant judge and subsequently became a district and sessions judge.
He served as the coordinator of Bangbandhu Murder Trial when Awami League returned to power in 1996 elections after 21 years of political wilderness and exposed the Bangabandhu killers to justice.
Mohammad Shahbuddin Chuppu, as well, served as the chairman of the Judicial Inquiry Commission after the 2001 general elections to investigate the murders, rapes and looting and inhumane activities committed by the BNP-Jamaat alliance. He was also elected as the general secretary of the Judicial Service Association in 1995.
After his retirement, he was appointed as a commissioner of independent Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).
In his student life, Shahbuddin Chuppu was a political activist and leader of Bangladesh Chhatra League and Jubo League and was the convener of Pabna district's Swadhin Bangla Chhatra Sangram Parishad in 1971. He was imprisoned for waging a protest after the Aug 15, 1975 assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in a military coup along with most of his family members.
He was also the election commissioner in the last National Council of Bangladesh Awami League.
Shahbuddin Chuppu's wife Rebeka Sultana is former joint secretary to the government while the couple has a son.