Print Edition - 2017-05-10  |  Local Elections

Locals living on city fringes ‘unaware’ of voting process

- Rastriya Samachar Samiti, Kathmandu

May 10, 2017-Come Sunday, 10am onwards, registered voters in 34 districts, including Kathmandu, of three provinces—3, 4 and 6—will start queuing up to cast their ballots to elect local governments in their areas. 

With only five days to go, awareness about voting is a cause for concern in many areas. 

The areas on the northern fringes of the Kathmandu Metropolitan City is are a case in point. 

So far no voter education programmes has been launched in the settlements of Gokarneshwor, Kageshwori Manohara and Shankharapur municipalities, which despite being so close to the Capital city are not linked through road networks. Locals say none of the political parties contesting the polls has reached the settlements for campaigning or other election-related activities. 

The last time locals had their experience of voting was in 2008 and 2013 when they cast their votes to elect the Constituent Assembly. 

Residents in these areas said they have no idea how local level elections work, especially when it comes to casting votes, as they are taking place after a gap of 19 years. 

“We do not know how to cast vote. Nor do we know the number of candidates and other related issues,” said Mangal Bahadur Tamang of Mulkharka of Gokarneshwor Municipality.

According to locals, during the first and second CA elections, there were some campaigns and programmes to aware voters about polls. But this time nothing of that sort has taken place, a local said. 

Residents of Manohara, Gagalphedi, Kageshwori, Shankharapur, Bajrayogini and Chaukibhanjyang 

among other places called for immediate campaigns to aware and educate voters about local elections. 

Locals of Mulpani and Gokarna among other places also said they are waiting for campaigns and programmes that could educate voters. 

According to a local Bishnu Prasad Sapkota of Dakshindhoka, the number of invalid votes could soar this time as many voters still do not know several things about elections. 

Published: 10-05-2017 09:13

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