Do away with monarchy first, say politicos

Kathmandu, May 20:

A group of politicians today demanded that the republican agenda be executed by the first meeting of the Constituent Assembly amidst festivities, as it would mark an epoch-making event in the history of the country.

“Other issues are secondary. The political parties should declare the country a republic first and try to sort out their differences only later,” said former minister Nilambar Acharya.

He said it would be against the mandate of the April 2006 movement and the recently held Constituent Assembly election to enter other issues before turning the country into a republic.

“Nobody should consult the king to turn the country a republic,” Acharya said at an interaction.

He also said the first meeting of CA means the first day of the meeting and urged the leaders to execute the agenda of republic the same day.

CPN-UML leader Bharat Mohan Adhikari said abolition of monarchy should be marked with a two-day holiday and great festivities across the nation.

“Let’s invite all the heads of security and civil agencies including the foreign ambassadors to the Constituent Assembly and turn the country into a republic, and all of us go to Narayanhiti palace to replace the king’s symbol with the country’s flag on the day monarchy is abolished,” Adhikari said.

Suggesting to replace the constitutional provision of two-third majority with simple majority to form or oust the government, he said the Maoists as the largest party should bring their plans as to how they wanted to run the next government and on what basis.

Flaying the killing of Ram Hari Shrestha in Maoist cantonment, he said the UML would not support the Maoists until their excesses did not cease.

Maoist leader Janardan Sharma ‘Prabhakar’ said his party was extremely shocked at the

‘mysterious’ killing of Shrestha and would do everything to book the culprits.

“We will never protect the murderers,” he said adding his party would extend all cooperation to the government’s probe committee.

Sharma said the Maoists only wanted to lead the government but wanted the major stakeholders to be a part of it, as the consensus was the need of the day.

Samyukta Janamorcha Nepal leader Amik Sherchan also said the monarchy should be abolished on the first day of the CA meeting. “Formation of new government is secondary; let’s first make the country a republic,” he said adding there was no way out without amending the constitution.

“The government should be formed by a simple majority provision and there should be checks and balances,” Sherchan suggested.

Lauding the role of Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala for holding the CA election in a challenging situation, he said, “It is not that he could not become the first president, but again consensus is needed for that.”