While much of the focus of the central committee meeting of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) was centered on MCC grants of the US government and Indo Pacific Strategy, some of the leaders have voiced the concerns of the general public. They have raised the issue of corruption and accountability. They have concluded that many NCP leaders have amassed property illegally and demanded that all their leaders disclose their property details and party should form a powerful commission to probe their property. They have rightly argued that political corruption will be institutionalized if the party doesn’t take immediate steps to nip it. Besides, they also argued that federal government has not been effective in delivering services as promised. They accused the top leaders of being involved in petty interests and said that the government has failed to control corruption. They also questioned the PM for defending the government’s decision to award lucrative contracts to Yeti Groups without fulfilling due processes. Among other things, they argued that elections have become too expensive and money raised to contest the election is being raised through graft. Notably, they proposed that if the leaders have invested in private health and education institutions they should not be eligible to become central committee members or get election tickets to become lawmakers. They raised the issue of the party’s failure to abide by the constitutional provision of securing 33 percent seats for women in central committee. Without a doubt, these are the genuine issues the party leadership must pay heed to.
It is good that at least some of the leaders are trying to hold the ruling party and the government accountable to people. It is no secret that government of K P Sharma Oli is abetting corrupt practices. The government has been criticized for failing to deliver on its promise of development, rule of law and corruption control. Now that party colleagues themselves have raised this issue, the top leaders must listen to them. It goes without saying that in two years since Prime Minister Oli took office on February 15, 2018, the focus of the government, including the PM, has been on talking big and delivering little. There was a talk of completing Melamchi Drinking Water Project within a year. This has not happened yet. There was a talk of making Kathmandu completely pollution free. Pollution reigns in the valley. The government seemed determined to dismantle transport syndicate and cartels but soon it backtracked from its own promise apparently under the pressure from various business networks.
Instead, the government has been willfully courting controversies by introducing the bills that could curtail press freedom and civil liberties. The government has been intolerant to media and public criticisms. When the press points to government’s wrongdoings, the government blames the press of non-cooperation and bias. Now party leaders themselves have raised some of these issues and called for mending the ways. The top leaders should realize that the government is becoming extremely unpopular and people are dissatisfied. Here is a hope that the top leaders of NCP won’t dismiss the voices of their own cadres as biased views against the government and the party. There is a lot to improve the way in which PM Oli is governing the country. Pay heed to your own comrades, at least.