Giant step forward
The 28th of May, 2008 was indeed a historic day that heralded a new republican Nepal. The centuries old feudalist arrangement was demolished peacefully by the might of 26 million Nepalis. From now on, a common man’s son or daughter can constitutionally become president or the head of state. This change is a significant step towards the creation of a new Nepali society and polity based on ideals of freedom, fairness, equality, justice and
proportionate inclusiveness in all national mechanisms and sectors for all Nepali citizens of various languages, religions, regions and socio-cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
However, political and socio-economic feudalism, inequality, and injustice still persist and they need to be sincerely addressed by the CA members while drafting the new constitution.
The lawmakers should constitutionally limit the tenure of the nation’s President and Prime
Minister to a maximum of two terms of four years each. Such a provision will forestall any one leader from clinging on to power for decades and ‘soft’ dictatorship inside the
ruling party. May we see the son or daughter of a Sherpa, Sarki, Sharma, Shrivastav or Shrestha become president of our country through a free and fair mechanism.
Dr Chhering Yonzon, Baluwatar
The ongoing standoff between the political parties for the posts of president and prime minister does not augur well for the country. CPN-Maoist chief Prachanda should accept the post of executive PM. Yes, the Maoists campaigned on the platform of presidency for Prachanda. But Prachanda can fulfil that pledge when the new constitution makes the
provision of executive president in the new republican Nepal.
The long-awaited declaration of Nepal as a federal democratic republic through first sitting of
Constituent Assembly on May 28 is a great tribute to all the brave martyrs who lost their lives to bring about this day. We have bidden farewell to 240-year-old monarchy and adopted the
republicanism in order to write our own destiny. This political development has been hailed not only in South Asia but around the world. This is the lesson from Nepal to the world that people alone can decide their fate, not with bullets, but with ballots. Nepalis expect to see an inclusive Nepal, free from corruption and violence. It is the responsibility of the new leadership to translate these expectations into reality.
Dhananjay Shah, Central Department of English, TU
I urge all the political parties represented in the Constituent Assembly to settle the issue of selection of 26 remaining CA members and the new executive at the earliest so that the assembly can get down to the real business of drafting a new constitution. These delays will make it impossible for the CA members to come up with a new constitution within the stipulated time limit. All of the parties should realise that the new government will only be a temporary arrangement on the way to the next general election to be held after the formation of the new constitution.
Sumit Shrestha, via e-mail