EDITORIAL: Left leading
The political parties taking part in the elections deserve accolades for holding three tires of governments largely peacefully despite some incidents of violence
On the third day of the vote counting of the parliamentary and provincial first-past-the-post and proportional representation (PR) elections the left alliance is continuing to lead. The left alliance is now clearly headed for a massive win with the returning results pouring from all over the country. The Nepali Congress is way behind the CPN-UML and CPN-MC. Now that it is apparent that the left alliance will garner the majority of votes and receive the mandate to form the next government which should take all the parties into confidence. They should be more accommodating and at the same time they should not bulldoze their policies but respect the views of the opposition. The Nepali Congress on the other hand should play the role of a constructive opposition. Were this to be done then the country could experience political stability which is lacking for the 11 years of transition.
The political parties taking part in the elections also deserve accolades for the holding three tires of governments largely peacefully although there were some bomb scares to dissuade the voters from voting. The voters’ turnout has also been impressive with as many as 75 per cent of the voters exercising their franchise in the local elections, 65 per cent in the first phase of the elections and 67 per cent in the final phase of the election. The first Constituent Assembly elections held in 2008 saw the CPN-MC winning most of the seats. The UML and Nepali Congress did better in the second Constituent Assembly polls held on 2013. However, despite the wrangling amongst various political parties the new constitution finally came into being on September 20, 2015. Now the constitution is still a contentious issue which needs to be resolved as per the needs of the country. The Election Commission also deserves credit for holding all elections in a successful manner despite the time constraints it had to deal with and also logistics and even education of the voters.
As the results of the elections will be out within a couple of days it is high time that the protocol of chief ministers, provincial ministers, members of provincial assemblies and provincial governors were determined. The protocol issue is now being discussed. This could not be done earlier due to the lack of time. After taking the constitutional provisions into account the new protocol would be issued within a week. Among others, the protocol of chief ministers and provincial assembly members should be set below the federal cabinet ministers. This is so as they would be representing bodies below the federal parliament in ranking. Some hold the view that the elected members should be placed above that of government secretaries as they represent the people. There is also much disputes about where the provincial headquarters should be. Hopefully, this will be resolved amicably in the larger interest of the country. In all case, Nepalis should be jubilant now that the elections have been conducted successfully. The country has come a long way and holding of the elections is expected to ameliorate the lot of the Nepali people many of whom are living lives of depravity.
The “clean the city campaign” launched by the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has started showing positive results in core city areas which often used to be filled with garbage for want of timely collection. These days the core city areas seem to be neat and clean as the KMC has used its machinery and human resources to collect the garbage on time, and it has also mobilized the locals to broom from time to time. Since the campaign was launched in June 1 the locals have stopped dumping litter on the streets and the KMC staffers have dutifully started collecting garbage before sunrise. The KMC has started imposing fines against those who throw the garbage on the streets.
The KMC has also appealed to the people to keep their garbage within their houses until the garbage collecting vehicles come near their localities. This was a simple idea but has shown a positive impact when it comes to cleaning the roads and local areas. On the other hand, the KMC has started sprinkling water on the major roads to keep them dust-free. Maintaining greenery is another project of the local body which is getting momentum. The road repair works is also in full swing.