Nepal | June 03, 2020

Oli’s twin offer creates ripples in ruling NCP

Ram Kumar Kamat
Share Now:

Kathmandu, April 30

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s offer to make Madhav Kumar Nepal the third co-chair of the Nepal Communist Party (NCP) and Bamdev Gautam the new prime minister has created ripples in the party, but it is not yet clear whether the PM, who made the offer in a bid to end the bonhomie between Co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal and senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal, will succeed.

The Dahal and Nepal factions have been pressuring the PM to quit at least one post — party co-chair or the prime minister. Oli had told the party Secretariat meeting that he would tender his resignation from the post of prime minister after the threat of coronavirus pandemic subsided, paving the way for ‘Gautam to become the new PM’.

Standing Committee member Raghuji Pant, who is close to Nepal, told THT that Nepal was not keen on Oli’s offer to make him the third chair, as its sole motive was to expose and weaken him. “I am for upholding the rule of law within the party and I am not for fulfilling my political ambitions through unfair means,” Pant quoted Nepal as saying.

Pant said Gautam had told the PM yesterday that he should resign as PM and let the party decide who should be the new prime minister.  Pant said the PM’s offer was only a bid to weaken the Dahal and Nepal factions that had sought his resignation from either the post of party co-chair or the prime minister. Oli’s decision to bring two controversial ordinances recently has riled NCP leaders. Oli has fallen into minority in the party’s Secretariat, Standing Committee and Central Committee after Nepal, Gautam and Jhalanath Khanal sided with Dahal.  Party leaders said Oli didn’t have majority even in the parliamentary party.

Another Standing Committee member Mani Thapa, who is close to Dahal,  told THT that Oli’s offer to Gautam might help him avert the political crisis that threatened to dislodge him from power. The proposal to make Gautam the PM was first floated by Dahal so it would be difficult for Dahal to oppose it now or else Gautam could switch sides, Thapa argued.

Standing Committee member Mukunda Neupane, who is close to Madhav Kumar Nepal, said Oli’s assurance to make Gautam the new PM was not credible, as the chapter had already closed. He said Oli had no power to make anybody the party’s third chairperson and only the party’s Central Committee had that power.

Another Standing Committee member Ganesh Shah said none of the arguments of the factions led by Oli, Dahal or Nepal held water.

“At a time when we are dealing with COVID-19 pandemic, the party should not change its prime minister. Nor should the PM offer anyone party’s chair,” he said, adding the number of chairs would go against the spirit of unity between former CPN-UML and UCPN-Maoist Centre. “If the party leaders decide to go for third co-chair, then that could give rise to demand for more co-chairpersons in the party,” Shah added.  Gautam could not be contacted for comments.

Oli is likely to face tough questions from NCP leaders on May 2 when the party’s Secretariat meets.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on May 1, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

Brazil

Brazil sets another record for daily coronavirus deaths

RIO DE JANEIRO: Brazil registered another record number of novel coronavirus deaths over the last 24 hours, the health ministry said on Tuesday evening, as the pandemic in Latin America's largest country shows no signs of slowing down. The nation registered 28,936 additional cases of the nove Read More...

High-level panel to decide on easing lockdown by tomorrow

KATHMANDU, JUNE 2 The High-Level Coordination Committee for the Prevention and Control of COVID-19 formed under Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence Ishwar Pokharel will decide in a day or two whether or not to ease the lockdown. Member Secretary of the committee Narayan Prasad Bi Read More...

FIFA adds voice to protests over Floyd's death

BERN: World soccer's governing body FIFA has joined sports leagues, teams and players around the globe to express solidarity amid outrage over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man killed in police custody in the United States. The National Football League, National Hockey League an Read More...

Nepal's ruling party stresses dialogue with India to resolve territorial dispute 

Kathmandu, June 2  Nepal Communist Party (NCP) lawmaker Narayan Kaji Shrestha urged India to sit for dialogue with Nepal to resolve Limpiyadhura, Lipulekh and Kalapani issues. He welcomed Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh's remark about resolving border disputes with Nepal through dia Read More...

Nepali Congress registers statute amendment bill 

Kathmandu, June 2 The main opposition Nepali Congress today registered a private constitution amendment bill at the Parliament Secretariat seeking to change the constitution's provisions related to citizenship, language, provincial boundaries and formation of a boundary commission. Eight Nepal Read More...

Dhangadi  quarantine

Quarantines in Sudurpaschim bursting at seams 

Dhangadhi, June 2  With the increasing number of returnees from India, the quarantine facilities in Sudupaschim Province are almost packed. The number of migrant workers returning home from India is increasing every day. According to Kailali District Administration Office, around 5,000 Read More...

Nine businessmen held for gambling, remanded to custody 

Kathmandu, June 2 Nine businessmen, some of whom are ‘well-known faces’ in the business fraternity, were sent to five-day police custody after being arrested from a gambling den last night. Deputy Superintendent of Police Raj Kumar KC, also the spokesperson for Metropolitan Police Range,  Read More...

PCR tests of all quarantined persons fraught with problems 

Kathmandu, June 2  The Ministry of Health and Population said that implementing the Supreme Court’s order to conduct tests for coronavirus on all quarantined persons across the country using polymerase chain reaction method was a daunting task. Earlier, the Supreme Court had issued an order Read More...