KATHMANDU, May 23: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has finally decided to step down from the post within few days and informed top leaders of his party about the decision on Monday.
Senior leaders of the CPN (Maoist Center) have said that Prime Minister Dahal will resign within a few days after addressing the parliament. At the party's headquarters meeting on Monday, Dahal informed the leaders that he is for honestly implementing the agreement reached with ruling coalition partner Nepali Congress (NC).
"The prime minister will resign within a few days after addressing parliament. The headquarters meeting has given the authority to finalize the date of resignation to party chairman Dahal," Maoist Center senior leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha told Repubica. "It could be Tuesday or Wednesday."
According to leaders of the party, Dahal stressed honest implementation of the power-sharing deal with NC, breaking from the past trend of breaching such deals.
Citing breach of such agreements between NC and CPN-UML twice in the past, Dahal told the meeting that he will set a new precedent by honestly handing over the government leadership before presenting the fiscal budget in parliament.
Dahal had become prime minister in August last year with a promise to hand over the government leadership to the Nepali Congress' President Sher Bahadur Dueba after the local elections, which were then scheduled for April. According to the political understanding, NC President Deuba will lead the next government until January 2018, the constitutional deadline for holding parliamentary elections.
"Our party is for handing over the government leadership to the NC without delay. We will support the NC in forming the government on condition that it will hold the provincial and parliamentary elections," said Shrestha.
During the meeting, some Maoist leaders said Dahal should continue as prime minister until the second phase of the local elections are completed. But Dahal rejecting the idea outright and said this could be the appropriate time for handing over the government baton to the NC.
According to Maoist Center leaders, Dahal plans to resign and introduce budget for the upcoming fiscal year as the head of a caretaker government. Because of the constitutional provision, it is likely to take over a week to elect a new government even after Dahal's resignation. According to Article 298 of the Constitution, the president will provide a week for the political parties to form a new government through all-party consensus. As all party con consensus government is almost unlikely the new prime minister will be elected through the majority process after the budget.