• NCP AUTHENTICITY ISSUE
KATHMANDU, JANUARY 30
Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Madhav Kumar Nepal-led faction of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) is miffed at the Election Commission for not recognising it as the valid NCP.
Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli also claims to be the leader of the authentic NCP.
The Dahal-Nepal faction's legal counsel Senior Advocate Mukti Narayan Pradhan said the EC violated the rule of law as it deviated from dealing with authenticity issues citing no application under Article 44 of the Political Party Act.
EC Commissioner Ishwori Prasad Paudyal had told mediapersons yesterday that the poll panel had not dealt with the NCP's authenticity issues as none of the factions had invoked Section 44 of the Political Party Act.
Article 44 stipulates that when the authenticity issue of a party is involved, those claiming to represent the authentic party should make such claims by submitting signatures of 40 per cent of Central Committee members.
Lilamani Paudel, who is with the Dahal-Nepal faction of the NCP, said that his faction had the support of more than 60 per cent Central Committee members and they did not need to invoke Article 44 of the Political Party Act. "The Oli faction, which is in minority, but claims to be the authentic party should invoke Section 44 of the Act. We command majority and we do not need to do that," he said.
Pradhan said it was a globally accepted rule that those commanding majority in the party represented the authentic party. He said the EC should have determined how many CC members were with the Dahal-Nepal and the Oli factions.
Former chief election commissioner Neel Kantha Uprety said it would be easy for the EC to determine the validity of the authenticity claim if the rival factions had invoked Section 44 of the Political Party Act. He said there were precedents in the EC in which the poll panel verified the signature of the CC members when rival factions claimed to be the authentic party. He said it would be impossible to hold polls on the stipulated date if any of the two factions refused to take part in the mid-term polls.
Uprety said both factions of the NCP were not invoking Section 44 because they did not want to take the blame of becoming the splinter group.
Former chief election commissioner Ayodhi Prasad Yadav said the EC should have taken a proactive decision after it ruled that there were only 441 Central Committee members of the NCP.
The EC did not recognise changes made by both factions in the party leadership.
While the Dahal faction removed PM Oli as party cochair and as general member and made Madhav Kumar Nepal, the second co-chair of the party, the Oli faction stripped Dahal of executive role and inducted more than 500 members in the party's CC.
The EC did not give validity to any of these changes made after December 20.
Spokesperson for the Election Commission Raj Kumar Shrestha said there was no NCP authenticity issue at the polls panel now, but if the issue was raised when the EC opened political party registration for mid-term polls, then the EC would take up the issue.
Subas Chandra Nembang, who is with the Oli faction, said that his faction claimed to have majority and his faction wanted to have the Sun symbol, but the EC gave its ruling saying both Oli and Dahal were co-chairs of the NCP. He said the EC's latest ruling meant that any meeting called by the Dahal-Nepal faction without the consent of Oli and Bishnu Paudel would not be valid.