Bhandari, Shahi elected PA speakers unopposed

Biratnagar/Surkhet, Feb 11

Pradip Kumar Bhandari and Raj Bahadur Shahi of the CPN-UML were elected Provincial Assembly speakers unopposed in Province 1 and 6 respectively.

Bhandari and Shahi were elected unopposed as they were the sole candidates in their respective provinces who had filed nomination for the post of PA speaker. The PA meet in Province 1 slated for tomorrow and for Tuesday in Province 6 will announce the results.

A meeting of the CPN-UML parliamentary party held today decided to field Bhandari for the post of speaker. No one filed nomination against Bhandari. Elected from Sunsari Constituency 1-A, Bhandari is considered close to Madhav Kumar Nepal in the party. After Sherdhan Rai, close to KP Oli bagged the post of chief minister in the province, Bhandari was elected speaker unopposed. The post of deputy speaker will go to CPN-Maoist Centre.

Similarly, in Province 6, Raj Bahadur Shahi had filed his nomination for the speaker. Shahi was elected from Dailekh Constituency 2-B.  The next meeting of the Provincial Assembly will formally declare Shahi as the speaker.

In line with the agreement between the UML and CPN-Maoist Centre, Shahi filed his nomination for speaker and will have deputy speaker as well. Since the speaker is male, the Maoists will have to choose a female deputy speaker. Bimala KC, Krishna Shah and Sita Nepali have shown interest for the post from the Maoist Centre.

After filing nomination for the post of speaker, Shahi said he would fulfil his historic duty with honesty and integrity. “I have got a new responsibility and will do my best with support from all,” Shahi added.  He said he would focus on making many provincial laws to implement the federal set-up in the province.