June 18, 2019 07:30 AM NPT
Ruling NCP lawmaker Janardan Sharma complained that those in the government had failed to honor the established selection criteria while appointing ambassadors under the political quota.
KATHMANDU, June 18: Expressing serious dissatisfaction over the government's nomination of ambassadors to various four countries, ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) lawmaker Janardan Sharma has asked the government to clarify the selection criteria.
Speaking in parliament on Monday, NCP lawmaker Janardan Sharma questioned the competence and expertise of the ambassadorial nominees for Australia, Bangladesh, Spain and Qatar. The government had made the nominations last week.
Lawmaker Sharma complained that those in the government had failed to honor the established selection criteria while appointing ambassadors under the political quota. “Is it that a politician can appoint anyone of his liking as ambassador? No criteria seem to have been observed in the latest nominations,” he said.
“The ambassadors are the nation's emissaries. What are they doing for the country? How much foreign investment and technology have they brought to Nepal? No one knows,” he said. “What are the terms of reference of the ambassadors? Have they fulfilled their terms of reference?"
Sharma's remarks come amid allegations that the four ambassadorial nominees lack any diplomatic experience or expertise.
The government has recommended Mahesh Dahal, a close relative and aide of NCP Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, for appointment as ambassador to Australia and Narad Bharadwaj as ambassador to Qatar. Bharadwaj is a trusted colleague of Prime Minister Oli right since the Jhapa movement spearheaded by the then underground communist party.
Likewise, Dawa Phuti Sherpa, who is the daughter of the late Pasang Lhamu Sherpa—the first Nepali woman Everesteer -- and has been nominated for appointment as ambassador to Spain, lacks qualification to work as diplomat. Although she comes from a family of tourism entrepreneurs, Sherpa, according to her close acquaintances, does not possess any qualification needed for a diplomat. The recommendation of Banshidhar Mishra, a medical doctor by education, as Nepal's ambassador to Bangladesh is also not free from controversy.