Tag Archives: Nepali Congress

Elections 2013: Challenges Ahead for Nepal

The government has finally announced dates for the CA polls (19 November). This has raised hopes of Nepal getting a new elected body. Not yet time to celebrate hoping that Nepal will have a government that is accountable to people and its acts transparent. Similarly, there will not be a competition among political parties based on issues and ideologies in the upcoming CA polls. The only reason to be happy about this announcement si that this election, if it happens, may remove the current government of bureaucrats.

Siromani Dhungana
UWB

2013 elections are going to be held in the same circumstances in which 2008 CA elections were held.  Almost same faces, mainly same political parties and more or less same agendas. Some politicians have changed their parties but the ideological division that existed in 2008 remains unchanged.

Confrontation (reality) vs Consensus (Illusion)

The problem is politicians are divided not on the basis of ideology or philosophy rather on the basis of their personal interest and benefit. There is wide rift between communists and non-communist forces. The division, a the moment, is in its worst level. There is division within communist forces and also within non-communist forces too. This deep division, almost to the level of hatred, may create obstacles in the election process. It will certainly be a stumbling block in the constitution writing process as it was before. Continue reading

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Nepali Politics is a Game of Corrupt Rulers versus Incompetent Opposition

It’s very simple to understand current Nepali politics. It’s a game between two blocks. One is incompetent and the other is extremely corrupt. Yes, the ruling leaders are cunning, corrupt, and hell bent on extending their tenure at the cost of national consensus. What about the opposition leaders? Are they serious and capable to end country’s political impasse? Can they ensure change that the people want to see in politics? The answer, unfortunately, is a big NO.

By Siromani Dhungana
UWB

One thing is for sure. The ruling parties have a clear objective: they want to make a lot of money before they leave the government. Leaders from ruling parties are cunning enough to create a catchy phrases and jargons against parties in opposition. They are good at blame game.

What about opposition leaders? They are good for nothing. They do not have a clear agenda, plan, tactic, or vision to solve immediate and long-term challenges that the country faces. Moreover, the high level leadership of opposition parties – namely the Nepal Congress and UML – is not capable to fight against or challenge tactics applied by the UCPN Maoist in Nepal’s politics.

I do not mean that leaders from NC and UML challenge Pushpa Kamal Dahal in changing tones and tactics every second day or rely on propaganda as the Maoists are doing. Nor they should give ‘false hope’ and sell ‘dream of Switzerland’ to people as Maoists did during the insurgency and continue to do so even now. Continue reading

American Diplomatic Cable: How Indian Pressure on Girija Prasad Koirala Saved the Sher Bahadur Deuba Government in 2002

2002-04-18 10:39

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 KATHMANDU 000768

Classified By: AMB. MICHAEL E. MALINOWSKI. REASON: 1.5 (B,D).

———-
SUMMARY
———–

¶1. (C) Ongoing attempts by former Prime Minister and Nepali
Congress Party President Girija Prasad Koirala to topple the
current Prime Minister, Sher Bahadur Deuba, appear to be on
hold for the time being. According to the Indian Ambassador,
PM Vajpayee, Minister for External Affairs Singh, Home
Minister Advani, Defense Minister Fernandes and the BJP
President had each discouraged Koirala during his current
visit from pursuing a no-confidence motion. In an April 17
meeting with Nepali Congress Party General Secretary (and
Koirala cousin) Sushil Koirala, the Ambassador stressed the
importance of a united political front to face down the
threat from the Maoist insurgency. Sushil Koirala seemed to
take the message on board–albeit somewhat grudgingly–and
did not raise the subject of a change in government.
Although G.P. Koirala may be dissuaded for now, he can be
counted on to resume his machinations against Deuba the next
opportunity he sees. Continue reading

American Diplomatic Cable: Girija Prasad Koirala and American Ambassador Moriarty

2006-05-09

C O N F I D E N T I A L KATHMANDU 001195

SIPDIS

NOFORN
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/10/2016
TAGS: PGOV PTER PREL MASS PINR IN NP
SUBJECT: PRIME MINISTER KOIRALA ON THE WAY AHEAD

REF: A. KATHMANDU 1191

¶B. NEW DELHI 3048

Classified By: Ambassador James F. Moriarty, Reasons, 1.4 (b/d).

Summary
——-

¶1. (C) Prime Minister Koirala appealed May 10 to the
Ambassador for assistance in gaining Indian support for a
third party witness for negotiations with the Maoists and for
international monitors of the cease-fire. Koirala liked the
suggestion of having two witnesses – perhaps an Indian and an
outsider – to be able to observe the negotiations, suggesting
that it be done under a UN rubric. He also suggested
expanding the mandate of the UN Office of the High
Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) so the UN could act as
an umbrella organization for the cease-fire. Koirala
expected the seven parties to finish their wrangling and
finalize a Cabinet by May 11. The Nepali Congress would lead
the Government of Nepal’s (GON) negotiating team, which would
then report back to a caucus of the seven-party alliance. He
requested that U.S. continue to hold off any security
assistance until the military was definitively brought under
civilian control. End Summary. Continue reading

Baburam Bhattarai Elected the Prime Minister of Nepal

Baburam Bhattarai and Pushpa Kamal Dahal "Prachanda"

Prime Minister-elect Baburam Bhattarai, right, and his party the UCPM Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal "Prachanda" emerge out together after the former was declared the winner in the Prime Ministerial race in the Constituent Assembly today.

Baburam Bhattarai

Baburam Bhattarai

Maoist leader Dr. Baburam Bhattarai has been elected the new, 35th, Prime Minister of Nepal. The speaker of the Constituent Assembly, Subash Chandra Nembang, declared him the winner in an election that saw Ramchandra Poudel challenging Bhattarai. Dr. Bhattarai is the vice-chairman of the party and was the finance minister in the Maoist Chairman Prachanda-led government two years ago. He secured 340 votes vs Poudel’s 235 votes out of 594. Continue reading

Prime Minister Jhalanath Khanal Tenders Resignation

Update on 28 Aug: Just to let you all know that the election for the new prime minister is underway in the Constituent Assembly as we type this update:

By Ritu Raj Subedi/Ram Prasad Dahal

PM quits after failing to make ‘breakthrough’ in his six and half months tenure.

Kathmandu: Prime Minister Jhala Nath Khanal Sunday (today) resigned from his post as he failed to make any ‘breakthrough’ in peace and constitution writing. The Maoist non-cooperation, and the intense pressure from opposition and his own party eventually forced Khanal to quit. PM Khanal submitted his resignation letter to President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav at Shital Niwas at around 8:30 pm. His resignation came one day after his self-imposed deadline. He had announced that he would leave office on August 13 if the peace process failed to gather steam by then.

“I resigned from the post for peace and constitution, not coming under the pressure from my party,” Khanal told the media persons after tendering his resignation to the President. He said that he would address the House tomorrow and put forth his views on his resignation. In his resignation letter, PM Khanal mentioned that he quit respecting the spirit of the five-point agreement.

“My relentless efforts for peace, national consensus and constitution writing could not come to fruition during my six months’ stay in office,” PM’s press advisor Surya Thapa quoted PM Khanal as saying in the resignation.

Khanal became Prime Minister on February 3 this year with the support of UCPN-Maoist, Madhesi Janaadhiakar Forum, Nepal and other small parties in the parliament after the UML and the Maoists struck the seven-point agreement. However, Nepali Congress and Madhesi parties opposed the agreement, citing it triggered polarization between Left and non-Left camps. The NC disrupted the House meeting for eighth time, demanding his resignation as the five-point deal inked on May 28 for the extension of Constituent Assembly’s tenure for the second time. Continue reading

Sushil Koirala at the Helm of Nepali Congres: The Road Ahead

What does the strong showing of Sushil Koirala panel mean for the Nepali Congress and the broader national politics?

By Akhilesh Upadhyay

sushil koirala of nepali congress

At least in short term, Sushil Koirala’s election is less likely to have a more telling impact on national politics of Nepal than that of the three-time Prime Minister Deuba’s would have had.

The much delayed Nepali Congress General Convention is finally done with. For now, the battle for succession is over. It is another Koirala. Acting President Sushil Koirala, 71, has consolidated his hold on the Grand Old Party as the elected chief for the next three years. Also, the Koirala panel holds a majority in the party’s central committee. Prakash Man Singh beat the much fancied Bimalendra Nidhi in the crucial race for the General Secretary.

What does all this mean for the NC and the national politics at large?

But first let’s gloat on the success of Gagan Thapa, 34, who got the highest votes at the GC. Gagan made his mark in the party—indeed the national politics—as a fiery orator, a student leader, taking squarely on the NC establishment in the early 2000s. He rode high on reformist agenda but, unlike so many other leaders, both young and seasoned, he had the gift to communicate his ideas effortlessly in large public rallies and the fast mushrooming political TV talk shows. The royal takeover in 2005 only gave him a broader stage to exercise his oratorical skills and expand his national reach. Gagan’s mass appeal does not just come from his youth, which is obviously a huge asset. He has also been quick to move beyond his party veterans (and many young leaders) who speak a very convoluted political jargon—narrow-minded, partisan, and mostly suited for closed-door intra-party debates—uninspiring to the political centre, and indeed the apolitical class. Continue reading

Gagan Thapa: Most Favoured in Nepali Congress

By Kamal Raj Sigdel

gagan thapa nepali congress leader

With 2,061 votes in his kitty, Gagan Thapa, 34, stands out as the most favoured among the 25 new Nepali Congress Central Working Committee members elected from the open competition.

Gagan Thapa means business. At a gathering of party colleagues and friends before the Nepali Congress General Assembly last week, the young Turk said he was confident of victory in the party’s central working committee (CWC), “The challenge for me is to garner the highest number of votes.”

The votes were all counted on Monday (27 Sept). And true to his words, he was the No. 1. With 2,061 votes in his kitty, he stands out as the most favoured among the 25 new CWC members elected from the open competition.

However, this was not a surprise for many inside and outside the party. For, it was discernible before the election that the young man had managed to shore up support from a multiple sections of the party’s constituencies, including the youth, the establishment faction and obviously from his father-in-law, Arjun Narsingh KC, who stood only second after him.

Thapa himself, however, believes that his success is the reward for his loyalty to the party. “I remained disciplined at testing times,” said Thapa, whose request for a ticket to fight for the 2008 Constituent Assembly (CA) polls was turned down by then party president Girija Prasad Koirala. He was later nominated as a CA member from the proportional representation quota. Continue reading

Nepali Congress General Convention Message: Unity Essential

By Anil Giri
[List of winning candidates]
For the record: With the final election results of the Nepali Congress on Monday (27 Sept) giving a verdict for a mixed composition of its 61-member new Central Working Committee (CWC) for a four-year term, maintaining ‘unity’ and working in tandem on national issues will be a serious challenge to both the Sushil Koirala and Sher Bahadur Deuba camps. The neck-to-neck competition and sizeable representation of the Deuba camp (29 CWC members) in the CWC may serve as a strong opposition to the Koirala camp (32 CWC members) in the party.

As the elected president, Koirala has the authority to nominate another 21 CWC members, subject to the approval of CWC. Many party insiders are hoping that the president uses his prerogative to heal the party after a divisive election.

One interesting feature of the election is that a majority of the new faces in CWC from the open and zonal seats are of the Deuba faction. Shanker Bhandari, Manmohan Bhattarai, Surendra Pandey, Jeevan Bahadur Shahi and Kishor Singh Rathor are the pro-Deuba new faces in the CWC.

The Koirala camp has secured 14 seats in the open category, 9 in zonal seats, 10 in reserved seats while the Deuba camp bagged 11 in the open category, 5 in zonal seats and 12 in reserved seats. There is speculation that some elected CWC members who contested the election from the Koirala camp but had been close to the Deuba camp, could return to the Deuba faction. Continue reading

Nepali Congress: New Leadership, Old Challenges

sushil koirala

sushil koirala

The 12th General Convention of the Nepali Congress on Tuesday (21 Sept) elected Acting President Sushil Koirala the party’s new president. Sushil secured 1,652 votes in contrast to his contenders Sher Bahadur Deuba 1,317 and Bhim Bahadur Tamang 78. Fifteen votes were declared invalid.

As per the party’s statute, a winning candidate must secure at least 50 percent plus one vote from the total turnout, which was 3,062 in Tuesday’s election. According to the Central Election Committee of the party, 20 representatives, including founder member Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, who was critically ill, remained absent due to various reasons. Bhattarai had written a letter to the Acting President a few days ago expressing his inability to attend the convention as, he said, the NC had drifted away from its original ideology of constitutional monarchy.

nepali congress flag

nepali congress flag

The election committee had prepared nine different ballot papers to simplify the election process. The papers were prepared to separate the posts of different categories, including the president, office bearers, and CWC members from the open and reservation quotas.

Unlike the election committee’s estimation that it would take 12 minutes in an average for a person to complete voting on the given nine ballot papers, the actual average time spent by a voter was 25 to 30 minutes. To speed up the election process, booth arrangements were made to enable over 40 voters to cast their ballot simultaneously.

Singh new NC gen secy; Yadav treasurer

prakash man singh and chitralekha yadav

Reaching out to one another:Newly elected Nepali Congress General Secretary Prakash Man Singh and Treasurer Chitra Lekha Yadav exchange congratulations in the Nepali Congress party office at Sanepa, Lalitpur, on Wednesday (22 Sept).

Continue reading