Nepal | June 24, 2019

UDMF, FA reject amendment bill

Himalayan News Service
Nepal Parliament building

The building of Nepal’s Legislature-Parliament.

Kathmandu, December 1

United Democratic Madhesi Front and Federal Alliance leaders rejected Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s request to accept the constitution amendment bill and participate in local polls.

The PM’s meeting with UDMF leaders over the constitution amendment bill comes a day after he held a meeting with the four major political parties.

Talking to THT, Upendra Yadav, chairperson of the Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal, a UDMF constituent, said the UDMF leaders told the PM that they could not support the bill in its current form and if the government wanted them to support the bill, it should amend the bill. “We told the PM that it was meaningless for us to take part in elections unless our demands were addressed by amending the constitution,” said Yadav.

He said the PM acknowledged that the amendment bill was not enough to address their demands, yet he defended the bill and urged the UDMF leaders to accept it and participate in local polls. “This bill does not resolve the country’s problems. It does not address the demands raised by Madhesis and Janajatis,” said Yadav.

Tarai Madhes Sadbhawana Party-Nepal Chair Mahendra Prasad Yadav said UDMF leaders told the PM that they would not accept the bill in its current form and they would not allow the government to hold polls if they were to be held without addressing their demands.

Meanwhile, the PM’s Secretariat issued a press release stating that the PM urged UDMF leaders to accept the bill and participate in local polls. “Considering the current political equation and circumstances, fulfilling all demands of the UDMF is not possible.

Those issues that are possible to address have been incorporated in the bill. I want you to accept it and participate in local polls,” the release quoted the PM as telling UDMF leaders. The release stated that UDMF leaders asked the PM to revise the bill to address Madhesis’ demands.

The Federal Alliance also issued a press release today stating that it could not accept the constitution amendment bill that the government had registered in the Parliament on Tuesday.

Alliance Coordinator Upendra Yadav issued the release after holding a meeting of the alliance’s constituents. The FA stated that the bill would not end ethnic, class, gender, linguistic, cultural, religious and regional discrimination in the country.

It added that the bill would not address its key demands that it had put forth to end all kinds of discrimination.

The alliance stated that it wanted guarantee of state restructuring as per the report of the erstwhile State Restructuring Commission, recognition of national identity, federalism with autonomy to provinces, proportional inclusion of communities in all organs of the state, adoption of multi-language policy, autonomy and self-rule, federal judiciary, local bodies under provincial government and social justice.

Madhes-based NC MPs flay UML

KATHMANDU: At least 27 Nepali Congress lawmakers representing the Tarai-Madhes region on Thursday criticised the remarks of the main opposition party, CPN-UML, about the constitution amendment bill tabled in the Parliament.

UML has dubbed the bill a ‘betrayal against the county’ and started protests inside the House and in the streets.

Issuing a press release, the NC lawmakers said the UML’s obstruction in the House and the protests in the streets against the amendment motion proved that the main opposition party didn’t want to resolve the political deadlock.

The lawmakers said the amendment proposal regarding the boundary of federal province was exactly the same document that was signed by the then NC President Sushil Koirala and UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli and submitted to the then Constitution Assembly on November 3, 2014.

“There is no ground for the UML to criticise the bill,” read the release.

A version of this article appears in print on December 02, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.

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