Awami League arranges workshop to train grassroot leaders


A daylong workshop was held on Saturday (November 11) in Keraniganj with a view to boosting up publicity of development works undertook by the incumbent government.

With technical assistance from Center for Research and Information (CRI), a research wing of the party, and with cooperation from Nasrul Hamid, lawmaker from Dhaka 3 constituency and a trustee of CRI, the event saw participation of as many as 100 local Keraniganj upazila unit Awami League leaders and activists.

With the title "Workshop on publicity strategy and party activities", a focus was laid out on the use of social media -- how to counter a barrage of anti-government propaganda, how to engage voters on Facebook and showcase a wide range of development works.

Addressing the event, Muzahidul Islam Mamun, science and technology affairs secretary, Dhaka district AL unit, stressed the need for developing skills of local leaders and activists to tackle down the counter narratives and smear campaigns waged by different quarters against the government.

On the other hand, instances are aplenty that how a barrage of lies fitted into Facebook to fuel sort of communal violence; how a complex web orchestrated an evil plot to question the war crimes trial; a sea of lies and defame of the current government, he added.

"It has become a pre-requisite that our activists and leaders at the grassroots get proper training and become equipped with adequate skills to stand against all sorts of propaganda being launched against the government," said Barrister Shah Ali Farhad, CRI senior analyst and also a member of the newly constituted Publicity and Publications Sub-Committee of Awami League.

Given that digital landscape has become a key space in this new era of digitization, a comprehensive approach needs to be set out so that good works of the government are properly showcased before the social media users, added Farhad.

Key features of this training included shutting down fake Facebook pages, maintaining personal accounts properly, assessing the need of constituents, ways to get accounts verified and spreading development activities on a regular intervals, said Tonmoy Ahmed, assistant coordinator of CRI and also a member of the Sub-Committee.

"More such sessions will be organized to bring in lawmakers, party leaders and activists in sync with directives of our party chief and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and her ICT Affairs Adviser Sajeeb Wazed Joy," he said.

Earlier in May this year, Prime Minister's ICT Affairs Adviser Sajeeb Wazed Joy has called Bangladesh's ruling party lawmakers to highlight the government's achievements in different sectors through social media.

Joy, also the son of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, made the call while addressing a workshop on lawmakers' role in social media to offset the negative campaigns against the government by certain quarters.