Home minister’s tweet on polls dismays EC

Kathmandu, April 17

The Election Commission today expressed dismay at Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bimalendra Nidhi’s tweet about the local level polls.

Nidhi had tweeted: The EC and security arrangement aren’t sufficient; political settlement through dialogue among the parties is must for successful elections.

The poll panel today issued a press release stating that it had completed the management related work for the local polls and was committed to holding polls in single phase. “DPM Nidhi’s tweet posted at a time when the commission is fully committed to holding local polls in single phase has created confusion in the minds of the public,” the EC stated in its release.

Clarification for my previous tweet. pic.twitter.com/9jFcLxGX4d

— Bimalendra Nidhi (@BimalendraNidhi) April 17, 2017

Vice Chair of CPN-UML Bamdev Gautam talked to the prime minister over Nidhi’s tweet.

Hours later, Nidhi again tweeted, “Local polls are top priority of the govt. A central security plan has been prepared in order to conduct the polls in free and fair manner.”

UML Vice Chair Gautam told a group of journalists at his party office today that he phoned Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal regarding Nidhi’s tweets. “The prime minister told me that the polls will happen at any cost,” Gautam said.

Nidhi later issued a clarification through his Press Adviser Ramji Dahal, saying if the Election Commission had made all the preparations for the upcoming local polls the government had also made good preparation for the same.

“But even if the EC and the government have made all the preparations for the local polls, these preparations alone are not enough for the polls. Parties’ participation in polls is the first precondition,” Nidhi said in his release.

“Since consensus and understanding have not been reached with the Madhes-based parties, it is necessary to prepare environment for polls through dialogue and negotiations. This is what I intended to say through my tweets and I urge the public to take it that way,” Nidhi added.