by Special Correspondent,
Dhaka – Mohammad Shahbuddin, a former director of anti-corruption watchdog, is set to be the 22nd president of Bangladesh as the ruling Awami League party nominated him candidate for the presidential election, slated for February 19 voting.
The party’s office secretary Biplob Barua told media that the party chief and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina nominated Mohammad Shahbuddin (Chuppu) as the candidate for the presidential fray.
Earlier in the day, a delegation led by AL’s General Secretary Obaidul Quader submitted nomination paper to the Election Commission (EC) in Dhaka.
The decision of the party nomination was finalized at a meeting on Tuesday.
Obaidul Quader proposed Shahabuddin’s nomination paper and the party Joint General Secretary Hasan Mahmud seconded it. Shahabuddin is retired District and Sessions judge. He also served as director of the Anti-Corruption Commission.
The Election Commission has set deadline for filing nomination paper for the position for today. The commission will scrutinize the nomination paper on Monday and validated the candidature. The last day for withdrawal of the candidature is on Tuesday.
With more than two-thirds majority in parliament, it is almost certain that the ruling Awami League’s candidate will be the next president, for the next five years. If there is only one candidate for the presidential position, the election commission will declare Shahbuddin elected unopposed. Voting will be arranged if more than one candidate is found valid.
Lawmakers of the 350-strong parliament are voters in the presidential election, according to the constitution.
The tenure of the current president Abdul Hamid, who was re-elected in 2018, will expire on April 23.
Mohammad Shahbuddin also known as Chuppu was born in 1949 in the northern district of Pabna. He is a member of the Awami League’s advisory council. He previously served as a district and sessions judge and an ACC commissioner.
A valiant freedom fighter, Shahbuddin was the convener of Pabna district’s Swadhin Bangla Chhatra Sangram Parishad in 1971. He joined the judicial service in 1982 and was elected as the general secretary of the Judicial Service Association in 1995.
He also served as the coordinator appointed by the law ministry in the case filed over the assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Shahbuddin served as the chairman of the Judicial Inquiry Commission formed after the 2001 general elections to investigate the murders, rapes and looting and inhumane activities committed by the BNP-Jamaat alliance.
He was the Pabna District Chhatra League president during his student life and served as the president of Pabna District Jubo League in 1974.
He was imprisoned following the brutal assassination of the Father of the Nation in 1975. He was also the election commissioner in the last National Council of Bangladesh Awami League.
He is married to Professor Rebecca Sultana, a former government official, and the couple has one son.