House okays CA election bill

Kathmandu, June 14:

The Parliament today unanimously passed the Constituent Assembly Member Election Bill 2007.

The Bill, tabled in the parliament two months ago, bars those indicted by the Rayamajhi Commission from contesting the constituent assembly elections.

According to the Bill, members of the Constituent Assembly will be elected in three ways — through first-past-the-post system, proportional representation system and nomination by the cabinet.

The passage of the Bill has paved the way for the conduct of CA elections by mid- December.

According to the Bill, 240 members will be elected through first-past-the-post system, 240 members through proportional representation system and 17 members will be nominated by the cabinet.With the consent of political parties concerned, the Election Commission will declare persons elected under the proportional representation system CA members.

As per Clause 7 (3) of the bill, the parties must ensure proportional representation of women, Dalit, disadvantaged groups and indigenous ethnic minorities, backward region, Madhesis while preparing the closed-list.

Parties should enlist candidates on the “closed-list” on the basis of priority. The parties must mention names of the candidates, and the group they represent in the “closed-list”.

The bill has also ensured 50 per cent of women’s representation in the CA. According to Clause 19 (h), those indicted by the Rayamjhi Commission cannot contest the CA polls.

According to the bill, those convicted of corruption, blacklisted bank defaulters and those deemed disqualified by any other law cannot contest the CA elections. Though some MPs demanded to withdraw the provision of disqualifying the Rayamajhi report-indicted, saying that it was not conviction of a court of law and thus will violate fundamental rights of the indicted, Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula refused to withdraw the provision.

During the discussion in parliamentary State Affairs Committee, Nepali Congress MPs Radheshyam Adhikari and Harihar Dahal today said it will not be justifiable to bar those indicted by the Rayamajhi commission from contesting the CA polls.