KATHMANDU, Jan 5: Leaders of the left alliance have given their green signal to Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to fix the temporary provincial capitals and appoint governors to the provinces.
Softening their previous positions, the two parties in the left alliance - CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Center) - have asked Deuba to pave the way for the formation of the new government in line with the fresh election mandate, by completing all constitutional procedures.
UML and Maoist leaders had stated earlier that the present government doesn't have the moral right to appoint governors and fix capitals. UML Chief KP Oli had said that their elected representatives won't take the oath of office from the governors appointed by the Deuba-led caretaker government.
However, Prime Minister Deuba tried to seek the consent of the major political parties for appointing provincial governors and fixing temporary capitals of the seven provinces by convening a meeting of five major parties at his residence at Baluwatar on Thursday.
“Leaders of the left alliance urged the prime minister to complete all procedures for power handover, abiding by the legal framework without any dilly-dallying. We asked him to follow the constitutional and legal processes while appointing the governors and fixing the provincial capitals,” UML leader Subas Nembang told Republica after the meeting.
However, the left alliance leaders urged PM Deuba not to take decisions which have long-term impact, arguing that the election mandate is against the ruling party. “We are not in a position to recommend to the government to do any task, because it didn't listen to us when we urged it to appoint the governors and fix the capitals long ago. However we have urged the prime minister to conclude all tasks that are necessary for paving the way for the new government,” said UML Vice Chairman Bhim Rawal.
According to the leaders attending the meeting, Maoist Chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal presented himself in a strong manner on the issues related to power transfer in the meeting. Accusing Deuba of prolonging his stay in power by delaying procedural tasks, Dahal urged him not to delay the formation of a new government under any pretext.
UML chief Oli was absent in the meeting due to health issues.
Expressing serious objection over the delay in announcing the National Assembly election date, leaders of UML and Maoist Center urged the Prime Minister to announce the upper house election date without any delay.
“Drawing the PM's attention toward the delay in fixing the National Assembly election date, we demanded that the election date be fixed at the earliest and urged him not to prolong his stay in power,” Rawal told journalists after emerging from the meeting.
According to Nembang, Deuba congratulated the left alliance leaders for election victory for the first time after the election. NC senior leader Ram Chandra Paudel said that the government will take a decision on fixing the provincial capitals and appointing governors without any delay. “The leaders attending the meeting also urged the government to announce upper house election date at the earliest and the prime minister assured them of fixing the election date at the earliest,” said Paudel after the meeting.
The Election Commission has suggested February 8 as the election date for the National Assembly. The EC has stalled seat allocation to the parties under the proportional representation category stating that the constitution bars the task prior to the election of the National Assembly.