Zillur Rahman to become Bangladesh’s new president

January 4th, 2009 - 4:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Dhaka, Jan 4 (DPA) Bangladesh’s Awami Party, which is poised to form a new government, named Zillur Rahman as the country’s next president, media reports said Sunday, quoting party chief Sheikh Hasina. “The party will nominate its presidium member Zillur Rahman as head of the state,” Hasina said after her party’s newly elected legislators took the oath of office, Ittefaq newspaper reported.

The 79-year old Zillur was elected deputy leader of the House by the party, to replace Iajuddin Ahmed as president after the new parliament goes into session.

“We want to recognise his contribution in the democratic movement in Bangladesh,” said Hasina, who is expected become prime minister this week.

Rahman played a vital role in keeping the party united during the absence of party chief Hasina during the two years of army-backed government, when she was in exile and later arrested on corruption charges.

The Awami League party won a landslide majority in parliamentary elections Dec 29, to return her to the prime minister’s post that she held during 1996-2001.

The new government is expected to be sworn in Tuesday.

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