NC meet put off yet again

Sujata Koirala says the party should sever ties with Maoists

Kathmandu, April 28:

The Central Working Committee meeting of the Nepali Congress resumed today to assess reasons behind party’s poor performance in the April 10 vote and to take a decision on whether to join the next government or not.

As the meeting came shortly after PM issued a statement calling for a consensus government as envisaged in the interim constitution, most of the CWC members spoke along that line in today’s meeting.

“Our first priority should be on abolishing the monarchy and enforcing a republican order, as this needs to be done in the first meeting of the constituent assembly. Then we need to focus on the procedure of the assembly. Formation of the next government should be our third priority as stipulated in our manifesto,” NC leader Narahari Acharya told this daily.

Acharya added that he and most other CWC members who addressed the meeting today said that the Maoist intimidation alone was not responsible for NC’s poor performance, and that adverse impact on the party’s base over the last one decade due to the armed conflict and incoherent stance at the central level on the crucial issue like republic also caused the harm.

A total of 15 central members, including Dr Ram Sharan Mahat, Narahari Acharya, Chakra Prasad Bastola, Sujata Koirala, Amar Raj Kaini, Laxman Ghimire, Deep Kumar Upadhyay, Dilendra Prasad Badu and Bal Krishna Khand, addressed the meeting today, and most of them stressed on a consensus government.

However, Laxman Ghimire and Sujata Koirala, who is also Prime Minister Koirala’s daughter, insisted that the party should not join the government led by the Maoists and that the party should sever ties with them.

Sujata said that unfair means adopted by the Maoists and the Madhesi Janadhikar Forum led to the party’s dismal performance in election.

“Congress would have performed even worse had I not advocated the need to retain constitutional monarchy,” a NC CWC member quoted her as saying in the meeting.

She also said that she did not distribute a single copy of the party manifesto during the election, as it was not formally endorsed by the party mahasamiti, sources added.

However, Khand, Arjun Joshi and Bhisma Raj Angdangphe strongly reacted to her, sources added.

The meeting was adjourned till Wednesday so that the party’s parliamentary board could work on the closed-list of candidates to be elected to the Constituent Assembly.

“The parliamentary panel would then submit the list of candidates to the CWC meet when it resumes on Wednesday and the apex body would endorse it,” said party leader Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat.

The Election Commission has directed the parties to submit the final list of PR candidates by Friday.

The CWC meeting that began on April 24 was adjourned till today after reports from all 75 districts on election performance were not available then.