MPs in bid to keep Nepal Communist Party unity intact

Bamdev Gautam’s six-point proposal for maintaining party unity is not a sound solution


Sixty-three lawmakers from the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) started a signature campaign today to pressure party leaders not to do anything against the unity of the party.

The lawmakers' move comes at a time when the factional feud in the NCP has reached a climax, with the faction led by Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal and senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal asking Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to quit either as the PM or party co-chair. Oli has, however, refused to quit any of the two posts.

NCP lawmaker Ram Kumari Jhankri, who is one of the 63 lawmakers to have signed the memorandum, told THT that they started a signature campaign to bridge the rift between the two factions.

"All the lawmakers that signed today may be close to different leaders, but we believe that all the differences related to party ideology and organisation should be resolved as per the rules and accepted practices," added Jhankri.

"Party Vice-chair Bamdev Gautam's six-point proposal for maintaining party unity is not a sound solution. His solution is like surgically removing a cancerous cell from the body," she added.

Gautam had recently floated a proposal stating that Oli should be allowed to continue as the PM till the next general election and party co-chair till the party's next General Convention.

He had also proposed to give executive chairperson's powers to Dahal.

Jhankri said their effort was to muster the support of 50 per cent lawmakers apart from those who were in the Cabinet and NCP's Standing Committee.

She said some lawmakers could not put in their signatures today as they were out of the capital. She added that their efforts were aimed at dissuading leaders, who had already registered a new party at the Election Commission, from effecting a split in the party.

Recently, some Standing Committee members had claimed that a new CPN-UML party was registered at the Election Commission at the behest of Oli.

The NCP has not been able to resume its Standing Committee meeting due to Oli's reluctance to attend it. Oli had unilaterally postponed the Standing Committee meeting on July 28.

Although the second-rung leaders of Oli and Dahal factions have been holding talks to attempt reconciliation between the top leaders, they have had very little success till now.

Party Spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha said stalemate in the party continued even today.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on August 10, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.