‘I won’t join an undemocratic party’
Former Jatiya Party Secretary General Moshiur Rahman Ranga, recently removed from all posts in the organisation, says he will not be part of any party that is run in a non-democratic way. He said he would not join another party either.
On Wednesday, Jatiya Party Chairman GM Quader removed Ranga from all his posts in the organisation, including the policymaking body.
In his immediate reaction to the news, Ranga said the decision was ‘undemocratic and unfair’.
A day later, Ranga tried to strike a calmer tone.
“I am not unhappy with the decision, but I want my expulsion to be withdrawn. You can’t stay in a party if you are at war with the chairman," Ranga said at a media conference at the Dhaka Reporters Unity on Thursday.
“Yesterday, after the decision on my removal was made, I was a bit incensed. I will not deny it. I have withdrawn the challenge I made to the chairman."
“But I committed no offence. I wanted to state that and called a press conference today for that reason. Even if I am not an MP, I will not be unhappy. If the Jatiya Party is not run in a democratic manner, I do not want to be part of it. I will not be a member of this party. I won’t join another party either."
Ranga said he could not understand how the Jatiya Party chairman could come to such a decision.
“I respect him. He is a member of my family. I do not know why he did this. I came today to express my sadness.”
Ranga also expressed the opinion that the section of the party’s constitution that allowed the removal of previous party chief Raushon Ershad was ‘undemocratic’. The transport owners leader said the Jatiya Party council had discussed the removal of the section, but it did not proceed because of certain other leaders.
“The process outlined in the letter that removed Raushon Ershad as the leader of the opposition and installed GM Quader in the position was not correct,” Ranga said in response to a question. “I expressed that opinion to a television channel and I believe I was removed from the party for that reason.”
Asked why he had waited so long after the shuffle to make the statement, Ranga said he had spoken about the matter to Raushon.
"She told me that I had signed all the letters backing her removal and aided her undoing," Ranga said. "I told her then that I was not in favour of the decision, and that the proper process was not followed and that I would raise the matter with the media."
"Now I have spoken," he said.
Ranga said he had signed the letters under threat, reports bdnews24.com.
“They threatened to remove me from my post as chief whip of the opposition if I did not sign. They also said they would not nominate me for the upcoming general election.”
“I did not bring along any Jatiya Party activists,” Ranga said. “Some members of the transport sector came with me. In the future, there will only be two political parties. I won’t say which they are. But [the Jatiya Party] will not be one of them.”
Ranga said he believes some people convinced GM Quader to remove him based on false information.
“Some people stick to the chairman like glue and they give him bad advice,” he said.
“The Jatiya Party is not a democratically run party, but I won’t call it an autocracy either.”
Ranga was an MP from Rangpur-1 and the opposition chief whip in parliament. He had also served as the Jatiya Party's secretary general.
Ranga had previously served as the state minister for local government and rural development in the Awami League-led coalition government in 2014.
He was appointed as the Jatiya Party's secretary general in 2018 when the party's founder HM Ershad was alive.