KATHMANDU, Jan 23: The main opposition party, Nepali Congress (NC), has decided to give authority to the provincial parliamentary party to take appropriate decision on the vote of no-confidence motion introduced by rival faction-led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Madhav Kumar Nepal against Chief Ministers in the Province 1 and Bagmati province.
NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba held a meeting with the party's Central Working Committee (CWC) members representing Province 1 on Wednesday and Bagmati Province on Friday to discuss the party's strategy in the voting scheduled to be held for the post of Chief Minister. The meeting was also attended by rival faction leader Ram Chandra Paudel.
"In the course of the discussion, President Deuba had put forth his views that it would be practical and democratic to grant the right to provincial parliamentary party concerned to take a necessary decision," said a press note issued by NC Secretary Krishna Prasad Paudel. "Since news reports published in a section of media was confusing, misleading and just opposite to this, this press note has been issued to clear confusions along with drawing attention to all the concerned."
The statement on behalf of party president Deuba comes in the wake of media reports that Deuba was under pressure not to give support to the Oli-led faction of the NCP in Province 1 and Bagmati Province, suggesting that Deuba was in favor of lending support to the Oli-led faction in the chief ministerial race in these two provinces. Rival faction leader Paudel, however, had argued that it would be wrong to support the Oli faction as Prime Minister Oli had taken an unconstitutional move to dissolve the House of Representatives(HoR).
Sources said Deuba during the meeting argued that the party should give its support to the NCP faction that provides key positions to it. Both the factions of the NCP are currently in negotiation with the NC about the number of ministerial positions they want to provide to the NC in the provincial governments.
A section of leaders within the NC, however, has maintained that the party should support the faction that provides chief ministerial position to the NC. "We will extend our support to the NCP faction that provides us Chief Ministerial position," said a CWC member representing Province 1.
The support of NC is a must to elect a new Chief Minister in Province 1 and Bagmati province after the ruling NCP saw a vertical split following the decision of Prime Minister Oli to dissolve the HoR on December 20, 2020. The rival faction led by Dahal-Nepal has moved a vote of a no-confidence motion against incumbent chief ministers Sher Dhan Rai and Dor Mani Paudel and the process to elect a new Chief Minister is already underway in the ongoing winter session of the provincial assembly. Both the leaders are close to Prime Minister Oli.