Parties, speaker agree to form impeachment committee

Published On: October 19, 2016 01:40 AM NPT By: Ashok Dahal  | @ashokpillar

4 each members from NC and UML, 2 from Maoist, 1 from fringe party
KATHMANDU, Oct 19: After lawmakers started demanding impeachment of Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) chief Lok Man Singh Karki, major political parties and Speaker Onsari Gharti have agreed to form the impeachment special committee in the parliament.

Sources close to the Speaker Gharti informed that she is planning to announce the 11-member constitutional committee from the House meeting on Wednesday afternoon.

"After major political parties gave green signal for the formation of the committee, she is set to form the committee on Wednesday," said a top official close to Gharti. 

Nepali Congress Chief Whip Chinkaji Shrestha said that a meeting of Business Advisory Committee of the parliament on Wednesday will decide whether to include the matter in the House business of the same day. The advisory committee comprising chief whips or a representative of each political party in the parliament is likely to endorse the issue as major political parties have already reached an understanding for the formation of the impeachment committee.

Major political parties have even finalized names of the lawmakers to be appointed in the impeachment committee. As per the political understanding four members each will be from the Nepali Congress and CPN-UML in the committee while two other lawmakers will be from CPN (Maoist Center). However, the parties are yet to decide to which small political party to give remaining one member post. 

 "We have stacked our own claim on one member in the committee in our capacity as fourth largest political party in the parliament. But major political parties are yet to decide," said Rastriya Prajatantra Party Nepal Chief Whip Dilnath Giri. 

Article 101 of the new constitution has a mandatory provision to form the impeachment committee, to recommend charges of impeachment, if such motion is moved by at least one-fourth majority of the total number of the members House of Representatives. 

However, major political parties and Speaker Gharti had delayed on forming such committee as no demand of impeachment against any individuals was raised in the parliament.

After Dr Govinda KC demanding impeachment of CIAA chief Karki during his hunger strike, few lawmakers had raised the issue in the parliament. 

Meanwhile, NC lawmaker Radheshyam Adhikari, speaking during the special hour in the House meeting on Tuesday, strongly raised the issue of delay on forming the impeachment committee. "Our parliament and lawmakers have become mute spectators while a head of constitutional body making mockery of law. I demand the formation of impeachment committee envisioned by the constitution without any delay," said Adhikari.

He dragged the attention of the parliament over the incident of CIAA chief Karki using unhealthy efforts to avoid Supreme Court's summoning letter. 

Similarly, CPN-UML lawmaker Rewati Raman Bhandari also raised the issue of Karki for obstructing SC staff to deliver the court's letter to his house. He accused Karki of misusing state power to save his post and power. 

Ganga Chaudhry of Tharuhat Tarai Party Nepal, also speaking in the House meeting, criticized Karki of trying to show hip above the law. "Our political parties themselves are backing Karki to make him above the law," said Chaudhary. 

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