The TIB finding that the current parliament has not been able to function effectively “is part of an international conspiracy” to defame the country, three whips of the treasury bench in parliament said yesterday.
Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) is working as “a paid agent to defame parliament”, said Chief Whip of Parliament ASM Feroz, also lawmaker from the ruling Awami League.
“The TIB launched its report after the killing of two foreigners and the bomb attack on an Ashura gathering to tarnish the country's image,” he said at a press briefing at the Jatiya Sangsad Media Centre.
Two whips of parliament Iqbalur Rahim and Mahbub Ara Gini, both from the AL, were also present.
Feroz said the TIB had no right to say anything on the present situation. It had crossed the limit by making comments on last year's January-5 election.
The TIB on Sunday released a study based on the present parliament's second to sixth session from June 2014 to July this year. It said the main opposition, the Jatiya Party, has failed to play its due role in the House formed through the one-sided January-5 election last year.
Terming the JP so-called opposition, the TIB said the party was working as “B-team of the government”.
Lambasting the TIB, Feroz said its findings are baseless, sheer lie, motivated and misleading. “We reject this report with contempt.”
Referring to the TIB study, Feroz said it defamed the people of the country and the constitution by saying bad things about parliament and the MPs, who were elected through people's vote according to the constitution.
“Who has given the TIB the right to say the present parliament has become a puppet theatre? The TIB itself is a puppet which dances to the tune of its masters.”
The main opposition, the Jatiya Party, has been playing its due role to make parliament effective with its constructive criticism and participation in the House proceedings, said the chief whip.
On the TIB observation that the Speaker didn't play a strong role in stopping the use of unparliamentarily words in the House, Feroz said such comments by the TIB proved that it has been working as “a paid agent” to defame the constitutional organisation.
On the TIB finding that adequate time was not spent on lawmaking, Whip Iqbalur Rahim said, “We don't need to take lessons from the TIB on how to pass laws in parliament.”
Contacted, TIB Executive Director Iftekharuzzaman said the objective of the study was to find ways to make parliament more effective and encourage the elected representatives to play their due role in the House.
It would be unwise to say anything on the whips' reaction to the TIB findings. “We expect that the elected representatives will keep their honour,” he told The Daily Star.