The ruling Awami League has become nervous at the end of the term like a batsman gets nervous after reaching the 90s. Government’s unrest and anxiety is visible in various issues. Although Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has asked her colleagues to make their nerve stronger in last cabinet meeting held on Monday but most of the members of the party seem to be suffering from uneasiness. Many leaders of the 10-year-old ruling party feel that `difficult times are coming`.
It has been known after talking to senior leaders of the Awami League, the recent quota movement, the students movement demanding safe roads and Sylhet City Corporation elections unveiled several wounds of Awami League. The party`s policy makers are deeply concerned about the five problems of Awami League in the election year. These five problems are:
1) Both Awami League and the government have become dependent on Sheikh Hasina. She emerges as the only savior for all matters. There is no other person to solve the problems without her. It is very worrisome for the big party like Awami League.
2) Senior leaders of the party are in the dark in the process of political strategy and decision making of Awami League. Most leaders do not know about the nature of the next election, and what the government`s strategy will be in relation to BNP. As a result, majority of the Awami League central leaders are away from the political field.
3) Awami League general secretary is industrious and active. But he is suffering from image crisis in and outside of the party. The common people now express open annoyance over his flippancy.
4) Awami League leaders and activists have been languishing in comfort in the last ten years. The organization has turned out to become a business and money making machine for many leaders. As a result, the reflection of the traditional organization has gradually is hard to find out. Recently, the organization`s detachment from people was observed in the students’ movement. The organization has become more dependent on the administration and the law enforceming agencies.
5) The relation of Awami League with the pro-Liberation War political power and the civil society is not also good. The leaders of the 14-party alliance have also criticized Awami League secretly. The people with liberal values who were openly vocal for Awami League once are now openly declaring that Awami League has changed a lot after coming into power.
Besides, how the party, which is stricken with the problems like unacceptable activities of its concerns, the frustration of the grassroots and the internal dispute, will go to the next election, is a big issue. However, most of the Awami League leaders are reliant on their leader and party president Sheikh Hasina. They think that Sheikh Hasina is prudent enough to handle all these adversaries.
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