KATHMANDU, March 11: Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli is likely to win a vote of confidence from parliament on Sunday with more than a two-thirds majority.
According to leaders of the ruling CPN-UML, Oli is likely to receive 210 votes in the 275-member lower house. UML leaders expect to get the votes of left alliance partner CPN (Maoist Center), Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJPN), Federal Socialist Forum Nepal (FSFN), Rastriya Janamorcha and independent member Chhakka Bahadur Lama, besides the votes of lawmakers from Oli's own party
Nepali Congress (NC), with 63 members in the lower house, and Baburam Bhattarai, the only member of his Naya Shakti Party in the house, are likely to remain in the opposition. Bhattarai will miss the voting as he is scheduled to land back in Kathmandu from a foreign trip only late evening on Sunday , but his party colleagues said they have decided to remain in the opposition.
Parliament's meeting is slated to hold the vote of confidence at 3 p.m., Sunday. Resham Chaudhary of RJPN, who is in custody on the charge of involvement in the Tikapur lynchings in 2015, will not be able to vote as he is yet to be sworn in.
Of the total 274 members eligible to vote, 121 lawmakers from CPN-UML, 53 from Maoist Center, 16 each from FSFN and RJPN, one each from Rastriya Janamorcha, Rastriya Prajatantra Party, Nepal Workers Peasants Party (NWPP) and an independent are likely to vote for Oli. Among them, only NWPP remained undecided as of Saturday evening.
According to the constitution, a prime minister must win a vote of confidence from the House of Representatives within a month of appointment to the post. President Bidya Devi Bhandari appointed UML Chairman Oli as head of the government on February 15.
In addition to the left alliance of UML and Maoist Center, the UML has been working to include FSFN in the government. According to a UML leader involved in negotiations, only the selection of ministries to be headed by FSFN is yet to be finalized. Raj Kishor Yadav of RJPN said his party will vote for Oli on Sunday. Of late, Oli has been trying to bring the RJPN also into his government and negotiations between the two sides are underway.