CC names sticking point in Maoist conclave

- POST REPORT, BIRATNAGAR
CC names sticking point in Maoist conclave

May 5, 2014-

The national convention of the UCPN (Maoist) has been prolonged owing to a dispute over the formation of the party’s Central Committee (CC), a crucial decision-making body.

Party Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal has proposed names for a 99-member CC but leaders Baburam Bhattarai and Narayan Kaji Shrestha have not consented to it.

“Despite my dissatisfaction at the names, I will help him [Dahal]. I will ask him not to designate any post to me,” a leader involved in the discussion quoted Bhattarai as saying.

Besides Bhattarai and Shrestha, Top Bahadur Rayamajhi, Hisila Yami, Kumar Poudel, Ganga Shrestha and Bamdev Chhetri are among the leaders objecting to Dahal’s proposal.

Maoist leaders held talks at the meeting hall of a hotel where Dahal has been staying. With efforts to forge consensus on the names, the election process has been halted.

Top leaders agree in principle to downsize the 266-member CC to 99-member but they are struggling to choose leaders for the positions. Though convention representatives are in favour of electing CC members through direct election, top leaders on Monday agreed not to take up the process saying that it may create problems in the party.

The top leaders are working to select CC members in consensus, which is believed to be a tough job given a high number of aspirants.

Dahal, who dominates the party organisation, wants continuity of an old set-up while his deputies Shrestha and Bhattarai want to induct more leaders from their sides. The closed-session of the party has been postponed for Tuesday.

If Dahal’s proposal of forming a 99-member CC is endorsed, more than 160 leaders will be demoted. This is likely to create dissatisfaction among many who have been central members in the past. “A revised list of Central Committee members will be presented at the closed session of the convention on Tuesday for endorsement,” said Agni Sapkota.

Formation of the CC remains a contentious issue in the party since its seventh general convention held in Hetauda in 2012. The convention had elected a 99-member CC but it was expanded several times. There are calls for both expanding and downsizing the CC in the party rank and file. Cadres want a smaller body which may be more functional and effective.

This time, leaders are adamant that there should be a 99-member CC but difficulties lie in making it happen.

Published: 06-05-2014 07:51

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