160 including 19 members of federal parliament contract coronavirus

Published On: May 8, 2021 04:11 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

It is still unclear whether the infected MPs can cast their votes on May 10 

KATHMANDU, May 8: As many as 160 individuals including 19 lawmakers of the federal parliament have caught the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

According to the Federal Parliament Secretariat, 18 members of the House of Representatives (HoR) and one from the National Assembly (NA) tested positive for the virus during real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests. 

Of the 1,235 individuals who underwent the test for the disease on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, the reports of 1,234 have been produced. The secretariat said that 11.97 percent of the people including the lawmakers, staffers at the secretariat, marshalls, personal secretaries and security personnel were diagnosed with the disease. Similarly, federal affairs journalists and employees at the International Convention Center (ICC) are among the infected ones. 

The tests were carried out for a special session of the lower house of parliament,-- House of Representatives (HoR), which has been summoned for May 10 (Monday) where Prime Minister KP Shamra Oli will try to win a vote of confidence. President Bidya Devi Bhandari called the session at the recommendation of the Council of Ministers as ‘the prime minister considers it necessary to seek a vote of confidence as per Article 93 (1) of the Constitution of Nepal’. 

Can infected lawmakers cast their votes?

It is still not clear whether the infected lawmakers will be able to cast their votes while responding to PM Oli’s attempt to garner a majority of votes in parliament. Talking to Republica over the phone, Rojnath Pandey, spokesperson for the Parliament Secretariat, said that the Business Advisory Committee would take necessary decisions regarding the issue. “The Speaker may call a meeting of the committee and go for alternative measures,'' Pandey said, adding that informal discussions on the matter are underway. 

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