Nepal | June 03, 2020

Ruling NCP’s Standing Committee meeting put off

Himalayan News Service
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  • Dahal and Nepal want to include one-leader-one-post issue in the agenda of the next Standing Committee meeting, but Oli does not want the issue to be included in the agenda

Kathmandu, May 6

The Standing Committee meeting of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP), slated to be held tomorrow, has been postponed. The decision to defer the meeting was taken jointly by the two co-chairs of the party, said Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s personal aide Bishnu Sapkota.

Earlier, a meeting of the party’s Secretariat could not decide the agenda to be presented in the Standing Committee meeting scheduled for tomorrow, as NCP Co-chair and Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli left the meeting early after presenting his views. Dahal and Oli will reschedule the meeting in a couple of days.

Spokesperson for the party Narayan Kaji Shrestha told mediapersons after the Secretariat meeting that the PM left the meeting after presenting his views due to his busy schedule and some health reasons. When asked to comment on the PM’s decision to leave the meeting in the middle of the event, Shrestha tried to downplay the issue and said, “Office bearers of the party Secretariat are expected to attend the meeting from beginning to end, but in case they cannot do so due to urgent work, they can leave the meeting after informing other leaders. The prime minister also did the same before leaving the meeting.”

When mediapersons asked Shrestha whether the Standing Committee meeting was postponed because of the Secretariat’s failure to set the agenda for the Standing Committee, Shrestha said, “The two co-chairpersons are discussing the agenda and it is up to you to interpret the issue.”

Dahal and senior NCP leader Madhav Kumar Nepal want to include one-leader-onepost issue in the agenda of the next Standing Committee meeting, but Oli does not want the issue to be included in the agenda. Shrestha said the two chairpersons would also finalise a proposal that should be prepared on the basis of the decision taken by the party Secretariat on May 2.

The last meeting of the Secretariat had decided to make party Vice-chair Bamdev Gautam a member of the House of Representatives. This means that the NCP will have to ask a party lawmaker to resign from his/her electoral constituency so that Gautam can contest and win from there. Oli had also told the Secretariat meeting that he would resign as the PM to help Gautam become the new prime minister. Gautam, however, had lost the last HoR election from his home constituency of Bardiya district.

Standing Committee members of the ruling NCP who are close to Dahal and Nepal are miffed at the PM for taking unilateral decisions ignoring the party’s directives.

They say that the PM’s decision to bring two ordinances to amend the provisions of Constitutional Council Act and Political Party Act had sullied the party’s image.  These ordinances were rescinded after the PM’s defence of the ordinances became untenable in the face of criticism from his own party leaders and the opposition parties.

Twenty members of the Standing Committee close to Dahal and Nepal had submitted a written application demanding that the party’s Standing Committee meeting be called immediately.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on May 7, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.

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