Kathmandu, December 17 Deputy speakers of seven provincial assemblies, all of whom are women, have sought fair share of power and revision of the existing hierarchy in which they have been placed below joint-secretary. Stating that they had not been given enough role, they said they were limited to becoming an assistant who got some responsibility only in the absence of speakers. At an interaction with Deputy Speaker of Federal Parliament Shiva Maya Tumbahamphe, Vice-cha-irman of National Assembly Shashi Kala Dahal and the media, they claimed they had been reduced to mute spectators. Provincial deputy speakers — Saraswoti Pokharel (Province 1), Upama Kumari Yadav (Province 2), Radhika Tamang (Province 3), Shrijana Sharma (Gandaki Province), Krishni Tharu (Province 5), Pushpa Gharti Bista (Karnali Province) and Nirmala Joshi (Province 7) — are in Kathmandu to hand over a report prepared after a meeting of Inter-Federal Parliament and State Assemblies held in Chitwan on December 15 to Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli and President Bidhya Devi Bhandari. The Chitwan meet was also attended by speakers and deputy speakers of both federal Parliament and provincial assemblies. Sharma of Gandaki Province said the existing hierarchy was humiliating. “So much so that we do not get seats during formal programmes,” she lamented. “How do we serve people without power, resources and responsibilities?” Tamang of Province 3 complained about lack of human resources trained in parliamentary operation. “We are working with the help of employees from the administrative background,” she said. “This has made things difficult.” Bista of Karnali Province said they got some responsibility only when the speaker fell ill or went on a tour, and they were just casual bystanders the rest of the time as they could not even speak about people’s concerns as other lawmakers. Provincial deputy speakers said they were given the post just because of mandatory constitutional provision and nothing else. It is worth mentioning that no woman was considered for the posts of federal or provincial speaker. They said they were ready to prove themselves if they got a chance like former speaker Onsari Gharti Magar. Deputy Speaker of the Federal Parliament Tumbahamphe and Vice-chair of the National Assembly Dahal said policies should be put in place to promote women.
Provincial deputy speakers in town to seek fair crack of the whip
Published: 12:24 pm Dec 18, 2018