UML pressed to arrive at consensus

- Post Report, Kathmandu
Parties tell UML to either agree on the single transferable vote system or offer an alternative to elect the National Assembly

Dec 26, 2017-The CPN-UML, which is set to lead the new government, faces increasing pressure to take a flexible stance on breaking the deadlock over election to the National Assembly.

Other major parties Nepali Congress, the CPN (Maoist Centre) and two Madhes-based parties are almost on the same page about the electoral system for the upper house.

The parties are pressing the UML either to agree on the single transferable vote (STV) system as mentioned in the ordinance or provide an alternative way out of the impasse. In the dispute, the Maoist party has not taken any firm position but appears ready to go ahead by endorsing the ordinance forwarded by the government to the President two months ago if the UML agrees to it. The Maoist party is repeatedly asking the UML to come to the terms of an agreement.

Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal is urging UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli to show flexibility. “We are of the view that there should be consensus among the parties regarding formation of the National Assembly. We are exploring options for the same,” said senior Maoist leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha.

Two Madhes-based parties Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal and the Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum-Nepal have supported the ordinance arguing that the STV could ensure their representation in the upper house. Two Madhes-based parties have told President Bidya Devi Bhandari not to put the ordinance on hold saying that the move could help Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to prolong his tenure.

“We are of the view that there should be no deadlock in National Assembly election. To end the deadlock, the President should endorse the ordinance,” said RJP-N General Secretary Keshav Jha. SSF-N Chairman Upendra Yadav also conveyed the same message to the President in his recent meeting with her.

The UML is of the view that the final proportional representation election results could be published without naming lawmakers under the category in order to clear roadblocks to new government formation. The UML wants to pile pressure on the Election Commission to go for this option.

The Maoist Centre argues that the constitution bars the EC from publishing final election results before election to the Assembly. The NC is firm on its position that the President should endorse the ordinance forwarded by executive.

NC leader Ram Sharan Mahat said the impasse would end “within a couple of days”. “It seems the Maoist Centre is trying to convince the UML to seek a solution,” Mahat said, adding that there was no alternative to consensus.

Published: 26-12-2017 07:37

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