Opposition leaders exit Shital Niwas after submitting claim

KATHMANDU, MAY 21

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli staked claim for premiership less than 24 hours after recommending the President to initiate process for formation of a new government.

PM Oli had reached Shital Niwas a few couple of minutes ahead of the opposition leaders.

He submitted the letter claiming support of 121 lawmakers from CPN-UML and 32 lawmakers of Janata Samajbadi Party-Nepal (JSP-N) for his reappointment pursuant to Article 76(5) of the Constitution, informed CPN-UML leader Bishnu Rimal.

JSP-N president Mahantha Thakur, JSP-N Parliamentary Party leader Rajendra Mahato and PM Oli had signed the letter submitted to President, Rimal added.

Oli forwarded his claim on Friday despite recommending President Bhandari to initiate the process invoking Article 76 (5), only yesterday. The Prime Minister, who had failed to garner the House of Representatives' confidence on May 10, appeared today with the claim citing he has the support of majority lawmakers.

He left Shitwal Niwas after holding discussions with the president for around an hour.

Meanwhile, the leaders of the opposition too have submitted their claim to the President minutes before the deadline came to an end.

Read also: Opposition alliance to stake claim to form govt under Deuba's leadership

The opposition alliance comprising Nepali Congress, CPN- Maoist Centre, disgruntled faction of ruling party led by Madhav Kumar Nepal, and Upendra Yadav-Baburam Bhattarai faction of Janata Samajbadi Party-Nepal, reached Shital Niwas claiming that they have the support of as many as 149 lawmakers to form a majority government.

President Bidya Devi Bhandari had given the parties a deadline until 5:00 pm, Friday, to present their claim.