House obstruction crosses a month

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Jan 3, 2017-

The Legislature-Parliament has become dysfunctional for a month due to the obstruction by the opposition parties, hampering discussion on crucial election-related bills and the impeachment motion against Lokman Singh Karki, the suspended chief of the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority.

As an attempt to address the concerns of the Madhesi parties, the government on November 29 registered a bill proposing amendments to five articles and two annexes of the constitution. 

The opposition parties maintain that the amendment proposal is unconstitutional and against “national 

interests”. They have been obstructing the House since December 1 demanding 

withdrawal of the amendment bill.

The meeting has been obstructed for over a dozen times by nine parties led by the main opposition CPN-UML. Despite several rounds of negotiations and directives from Speaker Onasari Gharti, the parties have yet to reach an understanding for resuming Parliament.

The House meeting scheduled for 1pm Monday was deferred till 4pm but the Speaker postponed it until Tuesday as the deadlock continued. “The continued obstruction has hindered discussion on the crucial election-related bills and impeachment motion,” Speaker Gharti told the House, asking the opposition to end the obstruction. “Holding election on time will become more and more difficult if the obstruction continuous,” she warned.

Though the ruling alliance had assured the Madhesi parties of tabling the amendment bill on Tuesday, it is not possible without using marshals. But such a move could further deteriorate the souring relationship between the ruling and opposition alliances.

The opposition parties say that withdrawal of the amendment proposal is the bottom line for allowing Parliament to function. 

Out of the 30 parties represented in Parliament, nine parties with a total of 201 lawmakers are against the amendment.

The impeachment motion against Karki has been pending in Parliament for two-and-a-half months while two poll bills have also been stuck.

Published: 03-01-2017 09:14

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