President Abdul Hamid has called for unity among people, irrespective of their political philosophy, to eliminate corruption, drug abuse, violence and militancy in Bangladesh.
“The government has been continuing its efforts to ensure good governance, democracy and people’s participation in development programmes in order to accelerate the nation’s journey forward,” he said in parliament on Monday.
“We have to unite and work to uphold the spirit of the Liberation War to eliminate corruption, drug, violence and militancy to build the ‘Shonar Bangla’ that Bangabandhu had dreamed of. Let’s forget our racial or philosophical differences and establish a society free of oppression to pay tribute to the martyrs who sacrificed their lives.”
The parliament is the focal point of all hopes and aspirations of people, he said in his speech.
“I would like to make a clarion call to all political parties, and people irrespective of classes and professions, to take a collective initiative to build a consensus on democratisation, good governance and unhindered socioeconomic development.”
“The opposition parties will also have to play a constructive role in maintaining transparency, accountability, tolerance of each other’s views, human rights, consolidation of the rule of law, and the forward march of the nation,” Hamid said in his speech, a constitutional ritual, on the first day of the first parliamentary session of the year.
He read out the abridged version of the speech as the parliament session began on Monday, led by Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was also present.
A condolence motion was passed after the session was inaugurated.
President Hamid highlighted the government’s success and initiatives in different sectors, including the economy, trade and investment, food and agriculture, climate and environment, education and health.
He applauded the government’s measures to maintain the law and order and curb violence and militancy.
“The government has made unprecedented progress in ensuring healthcare services for all. The biggest achievement of the government has been the successful handling of the COVID-19 situation in recent times. Two thousand physicians and 5,054 nurses were recruited on an emergency basis for confronting the corona situation.”
Arrangements were made for 10,525 ordinary beds, 666 ICUs, 73 dialysis beds, 554 ventilators, 13,516 oxygen cylinders, 678 high-flow nasal cannulas and 639 oxygen concentrators in COVID-dedicated hospitals, said Hamid as he highlighted how the government excelled in ensuring health facilities.
The government will be able to provide the COVID-19 vaccine doses for people soon, the president hoped.
“The government has been able to maintain economic stability through efficient and improved macro-economic management as well as by pursuing a pragmatic revenue strategy cum supportive monetary policy. The GDP growth in Bangladesh rose to 8.15 percent during 2018-19 fiscal year after achieving an average 6.6 percent growth during the previous decade, and over 7 percent growth in three consecutive years,” Hamid said as he praised the government’s management of the financial sector.
“The sustained growth in Bangladesh has been commended worldwide. The GDP growth decreased a bit to 5.24 percent during 2019-20 fiscal year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But at the same time, the per capita national income stood at $2,064. Alongside sustaining the GDP growth, it has been possible to keep the inflation rate at a tolerable level. According to an IMF report, Bangladesh has been ranked third among the countries achieving highest GDP growths during 2020.”