KATHMANDU, Feb 24: Following the bribery scandal involving the erstwhile communications minister Gokul Baskota, the main opposition Nepali Congress (NC) has directed the members of its shadow cabinet to keep a close watch on corruption in all the ministries.
NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba on Sunday directed the party leaders to keep a close eye on the illegal activities in all the ministries and expose the wrongdoings. Deuba gave such instructions during the first meeting of party’s shadow cabinet, which was formed in May 2019.
All 21 shadow ministers had submitted their reports at Sunday’s meeting. The meeting also discussed a report presented by the party president to review the work of the government.
“There could be unexposed corruption cases in various ministries of the government. The meeting has directed all the shadow ministers of the party to remain vigilant,” said NC leader Surendra Pandey, while emerging after the meeting.
NC Chief Whip Balkrishna Khand threatened to replace the shadow ministers if their performance is found to be unsatisfactory.
According to Pandey, the shadow cabinet will meet every month from now onward.
The party has appointed 21 lawmakers as shadow ministers with two other lawmakers as their team members to monitor the activities of the government.
But there was growing criticism within the party against the shadow ministers for their failure to expose the government’s wrongdoings. Some of the shadow ministers including Dila Sangraula complained of not getting proper support from the team members to carry out investigations.
Meanwhile, the NC has also condemned the use of offensive language by erstwhile minister Gokul Baskota against civil servants in the leaked audiotape. Baskota resigned Thursday following the leakage of the audiotape in which he is heard bargaining for bribe with a local agent of a Swiss company in connection with the purchase of security printing press.