PM makes NCP leader wait

Kathmandu, December 23

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, who had riled his party leaders two weeks ago by not showing up at a party meeting on time, has done it again.

The PM made party leaders, including Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal, wait for an hour today before informing them of his inability to attend the scheduled Standing Committee meeting at the party headquarters in Dhumbarahi. The meeting was later put off.

The PM was attending the inaugural session of the government attorneys’ conference in the evening where President Bidhya Devi Bhandari was also present, while NCP Standing Committee members and some invitees were waiting for him in the meeting hall of the party office. The Standing Committee meeting was postponed when the PM sent a message stating that he was attending the government attorneys’ conference and would not be able to attend the meeting.

Co-chairperson Dahal and other leaders left the venue at around 5:30 pm. “The meeting was postponed due to PM Oli’s busy schedule,” NCP Spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha told THT.

The Standing Committee meeting was postponed twice today due to Oli’s busy schedule — first at 4:00 pm and then at 4:30 pm — as per the PM’s suggestion. According to a Standing Committee member, the PM’s Secretariat was not aware of the attorneys’ conference in the morning.

According to NCP General Secretary Bishnu Poudel, the Standing Committee meeting will be held on Wednesday. The Standing Committee did meet today at the party office from 8:30 am to 10:30 am. Senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal and Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali spoke in the meeting. As per the schedule, co-chairpersons Oli and Dahal were to address the concerns of leaders on their joint political document that they had presented on December 15. Some leaders, particularly those of rival factions, have criticised the joint document and Oli’s performance in the government and in the party. Dahal, who was expected to finish his presentation today, had planned to leave for Chitwan tomorrow and Butwal on Tuesday.

According to party sources, the PM’s Cabinet colleagues are miffed at Oli for showing up late for Cabinet meetings time and again.

A source recently told THT that the PM would often show up late for his scheduled meetings with diplomats, ministers and other dignitaries.

NCP leaders Madhav Kumar Nepal, Jhalanath Khanal, Narayan Kaji Shrestha and Bamdev Gautam had boycotted the secretariat meeting at Baluwatar two weeks ago, as the PM did not show up on time.