Operation procedure sent to all seven assemblies

Kathmandu, January 29

The Federal Parliament Secretariat and the government have sent an operation procedure and expert human resources for the first meeting of all seven provincial assemblies.

The operation procedure was devised following a discussion between Chief Secretary Lok Darsan Regmi and Parliament Secretariat General Secretary Manohar Bhattrai.

As per the procedure, the first provincial assembly meeting will be of uniform type in all seven provinces. “We have forwarded the operation procedure to all seven provinces along with trained human resources to conduct the first meeting,” said Spokesperson for the Federal Parliament Secretariat Bharat Raj Gautam. “The experts will hold a meeting with representatives of parties in provincial assemblies three days ahead of the first meeting to inform them about the process.”

The Parliament Secretariat has sent four experts, led by a joint secretary, to each of the seven provinces. Joint Secretary Dhrub Ghimire is leading the team to Province 1; Bhanshi Raj Poudel is leading the team in Province 2; Rojnath Pandey heads the team in Province 3; Jeebraj Budhathoki in Province 4; Surendra Aryal in Province 5; Krishna Hari Khadka in Province 6; and Murari Mahat will lead the team in Province 7.

The joint secretaries will be stay in the provinces for 15 days, while other team members will stay for 30 days, said Gautam.

As per the understanding reached between Chief Secretary Regmi and General Secretary Bhattrai, the Ministry of General Administration will also send 27 civil servants to each of the provinces to conduct the provincial assemblies.

Gautam said the first meeting would endorse their interim operation procedure. Provincial assemblies can formulate their rules and regulation themselves, but since this is the first meeting, the central government formulated the procedure.

According to the constitution, the provincial governor calls the first assembly meeting on the recommendation of the chief minister. However, there is no chief minister currently, but the governors have called the first meeting. “We devised the operation procedure to ease such complications for the first meeting,” said an official at the Parliament Secretariat.

As per the constitution, the elected chief minister should prove through a vote of confidence if he is supported two or more parties. “Although there’s no such provision if a single party garners majority, it would be better for the CM to prove the vote of confidence as per parliamentary practice,” the Parliament Secretariat official said.

The first meeting of the provincial assembly will not have any opposition parties as the government is yet to be formed. As per parliamentary practice, opposition seats are arranged on the left side of the speaker, but since this is the first meeting, the seats will be arranged as per the majority in the assemblies, said Gautam. “The process the central parliament has implemented will be adopted in the provincial assembly,” he said.

The first meeting can form a committee to formulate the regulation of the Provincial Assembly and announce the dates for the election of speakers and deputy speakers.

As per article 182 (1), the provincial assembly shall elect a speaker and a deputy speaker from among its member within 15 days of the first meeting of the assembly while electing speaker and deputy speaker as per clause (1), either of the speaker or deputy speaker shall be a woman and belong to different parties. “If not more than one party is represented in the Provincial Assembly or candidacy has not been registered even with the presence of more than one party, then there shall not be any obstruction to the speaker and deputy speaker being from the same party,” states the constitution.

“It might be appropriate to hold election of speaker and deputy speaker on different dates,” Gautam said.