Samajbadi Party mulls alliance to push constitution amendment

Published On: December 26, 2019 08:49 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Dec 26: After withdrawing its support from the government, the Samajbadi Party is planning to form an alliance with other opposition political forces with a view to mount pressure for constitution amendment, said the party’s leaders. 

A Federal Council meeting of the party officially decided to withdraw support from the Oli government on Wednesday, expressing ire against the prime minister for rejecting a proposal by the party chairperson for forming a committee to study a constitution amendment bill.

“We want to foster wider ownership on the constitution. We believe all the people should be able to embrace the constitution, which is not the case yet,” Yadav said at a press meet at Singha Durbar on Wednesday. “Our party will continue to struggle for our agenda.” 

Yadav resigned as deputy prime minister on Tuesday along with Istiyak Rai, another government minister from the same party, venting their ire against the prime minister and the NCP. 

Asked about their party’s next move, Federal Council Chairperson Baburam Bhattarai said they plan to seek an alliance with other political parties and lobby for constitution amendment. “We will follow a policy of forming an alliance with like-minded political forces,” he said. 

Party Chairperson Yadav added that the party is still open to unification with the Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJPN). “We have held many rounds of talks with the RJPN for unification. One of their demands with us was that we quit the government. With this [latest] development that demand has been addressed,” he said. “I don’t believe the RJPN will make a suicidal move by joining the government.” 

Yadav further said that the party will lobby for constitution amendment through a parliamentary process as well as through public pressure. 

The party has said that the constitutional provisions related to identity-based federalism, form of government, citizenship and constituency delineation, among others, should be amended. 

“We couldn’t launch street protests when we were in the government, but now the way has been opened for taking to the streets,” said Bhattarai.

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