NCP co-chairs take jibes at each other


The long-awaited Standing Committee meeting of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) today began on an acrimonious note, with Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, who had been avoiding the meeting for two months, taking potshots at the party’s rival factions.

Oli, who co-chairs the party along with Pushpa Kamal Dahal, said his government had been performing well, but leaders of rival factions in the party were acting as opposition leaders. He claimed that it was because of them that the message of the government’s good work had not reached the public.

According to NCP Standing Committee member Mani Thapa, Oli claimed that the government was successful in checking the spread of the coronavirus outbreak, although the number of people who had contracted the disease had crossed 10,000 with more than 600 people testing positive for COVID-19 today. He also claimed that the government had successfully spurred development activities, although businesses had come to standstill since the lockdown was imposed in March-end.

He added that certain foreign forces were miffed at the government for raising issues linked to nationalism.

On a conciliatory note, the PM said if his government had made any mistake in the course of governance, he was ready to accept responsibility. He urged party leaders to act in the spirit of unity and defend the government’s performance in the public.

However, when Dahal got the chance to speak, he also took a jibe at the PM, saying one leader should not take credit for all the good work done by the government ignoring the contribution of other leaders of the party. He said the government had not been following the party’s directives.

The ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) put off its Standing Committee meeting today till Friday after Oli and Dahal put forth their views.

The ruling party’s top political body is scheduled to dwell on steps taken by the government for prevention, control and treatment of coronavirus infection, border dispute with India, Millennium Challenge Corporation compact and the citizenship bill, said party Spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha.

Madhav Kumar Nepal, Jhala Nath Khanal, Bamdev Gautam, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Ishwar Pokhrel and Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa were also present in the meeting.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 25, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.