No-confidence motion against Karnali Chief Minister ignites fresh row within ruling NCP

Published On: October 12, 2020 10:15 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Oct 12: The latest move of a section of lawmakers to register a vote of no-confidence motion against the Chief Minister in the Karnali Provincial Assembly on Sunday is likely to further ignite the intra-party conflict within the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP).

The move of 18 NCP lawmakers close to Prime Minister K P Oli and the party’s senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal against Chief Minister Mahendra Bahadur Shahi, who is close to Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, comes at a time when Oli and Dahal are making necessary homework in Kathmandu to accomplish the remaining tasks of the party unity.

The lawmakers led by Yam Lal Kandel registered a vote of no-confidence motion against Shahi on Sunday. They have alleged that Chief Minister Shahi had failed to deliver effectively both in the government and the party.

Party insiders say senior leader Nepal had earlier thwarted a similar attempt to register a vote of no-confidence motion against Chief Minister Shahi. However, the no-confidence motion was registered this time without the notice of leader Nepal. Many within the NCP suspect that Kandel has tacit support of Prime Minister Oli.

The development also comes in the wake of NCP Chairmen duo Oli and Dahal failing to agree on cabinet reshuffle and forge consensus on power sharing deal within the party. Earlier, Chairman Dahal had expressed dissatisfaction over what he described the ‘unilateral’ decision of Prime Minister Oli to appoint then Chief Secretary Lok Darshan Regmi as the ambassador of Nepal to the United Kingdom and former Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada as the ambassador of Nepal to the United States.

As a part of power-sharing agreement within the party, an understanding was reached last month to run the government single-handedly by Oli and oversee the party’s affairs by Dahal. Party insiders say the Chairmen duo continue to stand at odds on various issues pertaining to the functioning of the government and the party affairs despite this understanding.

A senior NCP leader said the attempt to oust Chief Minister Shahi could now reach Bagmati Province and Province 1 as well. While Sher Dhan Rai is Chief Minister of Province 1, Dor Mani Paudel is Chief Minister of Bagmati Province. Both the leaders are considered close to Prime Minister Oli.

Although Dahal-faction has serious reservation over the attempt to oust Chief Minister Shahi in Karnali province, Nepal-faction has remained silent over the move this  time. Party insiders say Chief Minister of Province 1 and Bagmati Province could also be changed if the Nepal-faction and Dahal-faction forged an alliance.


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