With a room full of councillors opposing her stepping down, Sheikh Hasina insisted party must find new leadership
On the second day of the 20th Awami League national council meeting being held at the Institution of Engineers Building in city’s Ramna, Dhaka, councillors gathered with much hesitation to elect a new leadership and relieve the Prime Minister of her duties as party leader.
Speaking at the opening speech of the second day Sheikh Hasina said, “I want to elect a new leader and strengthen the party in my lifetime.” To which the room filled up with councillors standing up and opposing the notion, by shouting, “No! No!” She further added, “Awami League is my family. I have given Awami League more time than I have my children. I am over 70 now. It is time for new leaders”.
The whole scenario was a very heartfelt moment for Sheikh Hasina and the councillors as she has been the figure behind the Awami League for the past 35 years.
She insisted that a new strong leader be elected to show the people of Bangladesh that the Awami League continues to be strong in line for the next parliamentary elections due in 2019 to ensuring that Bangladesh’s economy grows and develops from strength to strength.
She promised her continued support to the party, even if she was to leave her position.
Sheikh Hasina has been at the helm of the Awami League for the past 35 years, when she took up leadership in 1981, she saw the Awami League come into power in December 2008 polls and get re-elected for a second term in January 2014.
She could not stress more to the party on it remaining honest to the development of Bangladesh and ensuring that everyone works together towards a common goal of becoming a poverty-free nation.
Sajeeb Wazed Joy, her son’s name has come up several times at grass root level to lead the party, although there is no clear indication to this. Joy attended the second day of the convention but he was only there for a short time.