Oli elected prime minister with 338 votes

Kathmandu, October 11

CPN-M UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli was elected 38th prime minister of Nepal today by defeating Nepali Congress President Sushil Koirala with a margin of 89 votes.

Oli garnered 338 votes while Koirala polled 249 votes during the prime ministerial voting held today at the Parliament. After resignation of former Unified CPN-Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai was accepted today just before voting began, seven members remained absent and two members of Tharuhat Tarai Party Nepal boycotted the voting, 587 members took part in the voting.

Fourteen parties, including UCPN-M, Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal, Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum (Democratic), RPP, Nepal Workers’ and Peasants’ Party, CPN (Marxist Leninist), Rastriya Janamorcha, Rastriya Janamukti Party, Nepa: Rastriya Party, Bahujan Shakti Party and Samajbadi Janata Party voted for Oli. MJF-D led by Gachhadar had decided to support Oli following an eight-point agreement with UML and UCPN-M some 30 minutes before the voting began.

All agitating Madhes-based parties, except MJF-D, Tharuhat Tarai Party Nepal and some fringe parties, voted for Koirala. Four members – Hari Charan Sah of Nepali Janata Dal, Ram Kumar Rai of Khumbuwan Rastriya Morcha Nepal, Yashoda Kumari Lama of Dalit Janajati Party and independent member Atahar Kamal Musalman – who had seconded Oli’s nomination yesterday changed their position today and voted for Koirala.

NC’s four members – Pradip Giri, Jivan Pariyar, Badri Pande and Mohan Bahadur Basnet – were absent during voting. Giri reached the House late, Pariyar and Pande remained outside the voting hall as they had gone to check Pandey’s blood pressure assuming the meeting will prolong for sometime as representatives of parties were addressing the House before the actual voting began and returned late, while Basnet is in Singapore for his daughter’s health check-up, according to party sources. Rajya Laxmi Golchha of CPN-UML was also absent during voting.

Three of the four Sadbhawana Party lawmakers -- Laxman Lal Karna, Bimal Kumar Kedia and Shail Kumari Devi, who had resigned from the Constituent Assembly -- also took part in the election, as their resignations were not accepted. “We decided to vote against the ultra-left alliance which recognises Pahadi nationalism and does not respect Madhesis,” he said. He, however, said SP lawmakers had not withdrawn their resignations and if their resignations were accepted, they would not go to the Parliament.

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