NCP struggles to pick heads, members of House panels

Published On: June 20, 2018 06:30 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, June 20: Formation of parliamentary committees has been delayed because the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) has failed to name members and heads of the committees as a number of senior leaders have started intense lobbying to bag the positions of committee heads.

Of the total 16 committees in both the National Assembly and House of Representatives (HoR), the main opposition will head at least some key panels including the Public Accounts Committee. Also other political parties including ruling FSFN and opposition RJPN and fringe political parties will also demand to head a committee each.

But due to the pressure to 'manage' its top level leaders, the NCP is likely to claim the leadership of over a dozen committees though it has over two dozen leaders aspiring to head the parliamentary committees.

Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara had asked the political parties to submit the lists of their lawmakers to become the members of House committees by last week. But the NCP failed to submit the list of its lawmakers for the committees. Having a two-thirds majority in the House and house panels, the ruling party is almost certain to elect its candidates in all House panels, unless there is any understanding to giving the positions to other parties.

“Most of the leaders winning polls aspire to head the parliamentary committees but managing leaders is also a tough task for the party now as many senior leaders are jobless after the party merger,” said NCP leader Bhanu Bhakta Dhakal.

After new constitution limiting the number of ministers to 25, most of the NCP leaders are eyeing the posts of heads of the parliamentary committees. Senior NCP leaders including Mukunda Neupane, Chhabilal Biswakarma, Yogesh Bhattarai, Ghanashyam Bhusal, Khagraj Adhikari, Pampha Bhusal, Devendra Paudel, Janardan Sharma, Haribol Gajurel, among other top leaders, are likely to get the chance to head the House committees.

With the new parliamentary regulations provisioning that at least one-third of the committee heads should be women, some central committee members of the NCP are likely to get the chance to head the House committee as the party has only two women in its standing committee.

“The spirit of party unification, portfolio of leaders, leadership management, performance capacity and experience will be major basis for picking the House committee heads from the party,” said Dhakal.

The House of Representatives will have Finance Committee; International Relations Committee; Industry, Commerce, Labor and Consumer Rights Committee; Law, Justice and Human Rights Committee; Agriculture, Cooperatives and Natural Resources Committee; Women and Social Committee; State Affairs and Good Governance Committee; Development and Technology Committee; Education and Health Committee; and Public Accounts Committee.

The Parliamentary Hearing Special Committee and Committee on Monitoring Principle Directives of State will be joint committees comprising members from both upper and lower houses. But the regulation for the joint house session is expected to be endorsed only on Friday.

Likewise, the National Assembly will have Sustainable Development and Good Governance, Statute Management, National Concern Committee and Delegated Management committee.

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