EC worried about lack of consensus on May polls
Madhes-based parties have warned of boycotting and disrupting the local level elections if the constitution is not amended first
Mar 20, 2017-The Election Commission on Sunday expressed serious concerns over the absence of consensus among the political parties on the local level elections scheduled for May 14, considering in particular the situation in Province 2, where the Madhes-based parties that have announced to disrupt the polls have strong presence.
During a press conference held at the EC headquarters in Kathmandu, Chief Election Commissioner Ayodhee Prasad Yadav said, “We have been saying that the participation of all the political parties in the local level elections should be ensured.” Yadav added that he had drawn the attention of Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal about it in their recent meetings.
The agitating parties united under the banner of the Samyukta Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha have started disruptive activities in several Tarai districts. In Saptari, they padlocked all the newly formed local unit offices on Sunday.
The regional parties have warned of boycotting and disrupting the polls unless the constitution amendment bill tabled in Parliament was passed first.
During his meeting with PM Dahal on Friday, CEC Yadav had asked the government to create an environment for all the people and the parties to take ownership of the upcoming local elections.
The EC is preparing to mobilise government officials for preparations on the field. The election authority is preparing to mobilise 105,000 government staffers and 63,000 volunteers in around 21,000 polling booths.
“We have almost completed the preparations at the centre and are moving to prepare the ground at the local level,” said Yadav.
SJP symbol on ballot papers
KATHMANDU: After the Supreme Court stayed the Election Commission’s decision to de-list the Samajbadi Janata Party (SJP), the poll authority has made arrangements for printing the ballot papers by incorporating the electoral symbol of the party.
The commission had scrapped the party led by Prem Bahadur Singh last year for failing to submit annual audit reports for three consecutive years. The apex court stayed the decision on Friday.
“We have accommodated the SJP’s usual election symbol as a party represented in Parliament,” said EC Secretary Gopinath Mainali.
As Singh’s party has been registered only in three districts of the mid-western region, the SJP has been accommodated in the ballot papers meant for them.
The EC started printing ballot papers of six different sizes on Sunday. (PR)
Published: 20-03-2017 09:03