105 parties submitted audit details early: EC

EC says the recent elections caused the parties to submit their income and expenditure details in time

Jan 4, 2018-Political parties were early to submit their annual audit reports to the Election Commission for the fiscal year 2016-17 compared to the previous years, thanks to the recent polls.

Although the submission date  closes in mid-February, 105 out of 125 parties have already made the  submission of their annual income and expenditure details.  This, according to the EC, was possible because of the general elections that were held on November 26 and December 7. 

“Without submitting the annual audit report, parties cannot get the commission’s recognition, and thereby cannot contest in  election,” said EC Spokesperson Dinesh Ghimire. “It was the recent elections that led most of the parties to submit their audit reports in time.”

According to the EC, 35 parties were fined in the fiscal year 2015-16 for failing to submit their audit reports on time.

The EC also holds the authority to scrap registration of political parties for not submitting the audit reports for three consecutive years.   Fifteen parties were delisted from the EC’s registry in the fiscal year 2015-16.

Under the new provision of the new Act on Political Parties, parties must submit their latest annual audit report along with the party statute and manifesto to get registered with the EC.

As many as 91 parties had registered themselves with the EC with the intent of participating in the elections of House of Representatives;

79 parties contested under First Past the Post (FPTP) system while 49 parties participated under Proportional Representation (PR) category.

Likewise, 78 parties participated in the provincial elections under the FPTP rule while 20 to 31 parties participated in the elections under the PR category.

  EC officials said the provision audit report submission was one way of keeping the income and expenditure of political parties in check, though However, there are many who doubt the audit reports submitted by the parties since there is no penalty provision in case a party is found to have misrepresented its income and spending figures in its report.

“This is a crucial issue that needs to be addressed for the sake of transparency, but there is no provision as of yet,” said Ghimire.

Published: 04-01-2018 08:27

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