Jimmy Carter seeks timely, credible CA election

Kathmandu, August 10:

Former US President Jimmy Carter today urged the government to demonstrate its genuine intention to hold credible Constituent Assembly election on schedule.

“Now is the time for the government to demonstrate its genuine intention to hold a credible constituent assembly election on November 22, 2007,” President Carter is quoted as saying in a press release issued by the Carter Centre today.

He added: “The parties must come together to convince the people of their dedication to this goal, take immediate steps to gain the confidence of marginalised groups, and address the poor security environment so that the peace process continues to progress.” The centre stated that a second electoral delay may cause the legitimacy of the present interim government — the sole mandate of which is to conduct a constituent assembly election — to fall into question.

“Preconditions imposed on the process at this late stage do not help instill broad public confidence. Time is now short, and a credible electoral process will require urgent, unified and effective action on several fronts,” stated the release. The primary burden of effort rests upon the eight-party government, though there are important roles for marginalised groups, individual political parties, civil society, and the international community to play, according to the Carter Centre.