KATHMANDU, Jan 14: One of the two chairpersons of the ruling Nepal Communist Party's Dahal-Nepal faction, Madhav Kumar Nepal has claimed that Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli is not in favor of holding midterm elections on the scheduled dates.
Speaking at an interaction organized by Nepal Buddhijibi Sangathan, an intellectual forum close to the Dahal-Nepal faction, at Nepal Academy on Thursday, leader Nepal said that the prime minister's ‘constitutional coup’ [dissolution of parliament] has plunged the country into another round of political instability.
"I don't see any possibility of elections taking place on the scheduled dates because PM Oli is not ready to hold elections and his behavior also does not indicate that," Nepal said.
Leader Nepal said that the Oli-led government has already been reduced to a caretaker one after the dissolution of parliament.
Referring to Article 76 of the constitution, Nepal said that the prime minister can dissolve parliament if the prime minister fails to obtain a vote of confidence or if the prime minister cannot be appointed. “Then, the president can dissolve parliament upon the recommendation of the prime minister.”
"So, according to this provision, the constitution does not allow Oli to dissolve parliament as there were still chances to form a new government. But, he dissolved it unconstitutionally," he said.
Lambasting Oli for making unilateral decisions both in the party and in the government, Nepal said that Oli tried to enslave all the party leaders. The former prime minister also said that the entire communist movement is facing troubles due to the ‘dictatorship imposed by Oli’ in the ruling party.
"Oli's poor performance should be held responsible for the current instability in the country. Neither did the government under his leadership perform well nor did he want to consult the party before making any decisions. On the one hand, Oli spoiled the party's unification process and on the other, he failed to act effectively as the prime minister," Nepal who is also a former prime minister said.
Recalling that he, as the party’s general secretary, had helped Oli become deputy prime minister back in 2007, Nepal said that he and other party leaders had to face various troubles due to Oli even back then.
"When Oli begged for the ministerial portfolio, some people opposed it because he was the person who had firmly opposed republicanism. But, I helped him become the deputy prime minister," Nepal said.
On a separate note, he said that his faction of the party holds a two-thirds majority in the party and has already informed the Election Commission regarding the same.
"We [Dahal-Nepal faction] have the support of 315 central committee members while Oliji has the support of less than 115 central committee members. But, Oliji is claiming that he holds a majority. Isn't that ironic?" he questioned.
Leader Nepal also said that Oli's decision to induct new members into the central committee making it to 1,500 is illegitimate as per the party statute. "It requires a two-thirds majority in the party to amend the party statute. In this situation, how can Oliji amend the party statute whose faction is already in a minority in the party?" he further asked.
"A vote of no-confidence has already been registered in parliament against Oli. At the same time, he has been removed from the posts of party chairman and parliamentary party leader," he said.