Avoid any decision that could affect polls, EC to govt

Published On: October 11, 2017 05:00 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Oct 11: Chief Election Commissioner Ayodhee Prasad Yadav has urged the government not to take any decision that can affect the scheduled parliamentary and provincial elections. 

The request from the election body chief comes at a time when speculations are rife that the government is preparing to reshuffle the cabinet by sacking ministers from the UCPN (Maoist), a key coalition partner. The relations between the two ruling coalition partners--Nepali Congress and the Maoist Center--have soured after the Maoist Center forged an electoral alliance with the main opposition CPN-UML last week. 

Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba is reportedly preparing to sack Maoist ministers concluding that it will be difficult to conduct the elections with a Maoist as home minister. Currently, Maoist leader Janardan Sharma heads the ministry, which is involved in providing security for the elections. 

 "Since we have already expedited poll preparations I urge the government not to take any unpopular decision that affects scheduled elections," said CEC Yadav addressing a training organized for election officers in Dhulikhel.
"We successfully conducted the local polls. It was made possible because of support from all walks of life. This time too, I request one and all not to create obstacles from anyone." 

The election body is conducting both the parliamentary and provincial elections in two phases. First round of election will be conducted on November 26 while the second round of elections will take place on December 7. 

As part of conducting the polls the EC has already started printing ballot papers and arranging necessary logistics. The recent 'unexpected' pre-poll alliance among the left parties, however, has created uncertainties among the public over whether the crucial elections will take place thereby inviting constitutional crisis in the country. 
Since the constitution has a provision to conduct all sets of elections by January 2018 many believe a poll deferral may invite constitutional crisis. 

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