Kathmandu, January 22
Youth leaders of the Nepali Congress are displeased with the leadership’s decision backtracking on its previous stance that the party would contest the election for speaker of the House of Representatives.
With the NC parliamentary party deciding not to contest election, it’s certain that the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP)’s candidate Agni Sapkota will be elected unopposed.
Sapkota is accused of murdering Arjun Lama of Sindhupalchowk. Lama’s wife Purni Maya had filed a case in the Supreme Court. The case is sub-judice.
Apparently, NCP Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal convinced NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba and senior leader Ramchandra Paudel that if Sapkota was elected unopposed, he would help the NC get the deputy speaker’s post, sources said.
This has resulted in dissatisfaction among NC youth leaders with some venting ire on social media and others coming up with public statements.
NC central working committee member Pradip Paudel said, “The leadership did not even think of repercussions, let alone long-term effects, of the decision.” He added, “Since the speaker is also a member of the Constitutional Council, the NC leadership should have thought whether or not Sapkota’s appointment will affect the case against him,”
Another NC CWC member Dhan Raj Gurung said,“The NC should not have bargained for the post and allowed unopposed election of speaker. He further said, “Our leaders even rushed to Dahal’s residence to bargain.”
Gurung said that instead of playing a strong role in checking the government’s autocratic moves, the NC leadership was getting close to the ruling party as if the two were partners.
A version of this article appears in print on January 23, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.