President Bidya Devi Bhandari has dissolved the House of Representatives and also approved the cabinet’s decision to hold a mid-term general election on April 30 and May 10.
According to the press statement, the Office of the President stated that President has approved the recommendation of the Council of Ministers, stepping on Article 76 (1) and (7) and Article 85 of the constitution.
Earlier in a surprise move, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli had recommended dissolution of the Federal Parliament during an emergency cabinet meeting on Sunday.
The meeting held at the Prime Minister’s Official Residence in Baluwatar decided to recommend to President Bidya Devi Bhandari amidst a widening rift in his party Nepal Communist Party.
There were protests in different parts of the country against the move to dissolve the House of Representatives. Calling the move undemocratic and unconstitutional, different youth organizations associated with the ruling Nepal Communist Party and opposition party Nepali Congress and Janta Samajbadi Party organized protests.
“Today’s move to dissolve the House of Representative is undemocratic, unconstitutional, and autocratic. Let’s unite to oppose this,” said Narayan Kaji Shrestha, spokesperson of the ruling Nepal Communist Party. Similarly, Baburam Bhattarai, leader of Janta Samajbadi Party termed the move as undemocratic and unconstitutional.
Surya Thapa, the press advisor of Prime Minister Oli defended this move and said “ Prime Minister Oli thought the way out of this surging instability would be to go on people again.”
The constitution does not have a clear provision for the dissolution of parliament, according to some legal experts. So, this move is likely to be challenged in court.
In an address to the nation after the parliament dissolution, Oli defended his surprise move and said “The elected government was not allowed to work so I decided to dissolve the house. Nobody had thought that the country would go for an election one and half years before elections were due but it was a compulsion.”
The rift in the ruling NCP was widening in recent years. Instead of focusing on prime issues like development and the pandemic of Covid-19, leaders involved themselves around power and position. The corruption in the country is sky-rocketing. The coronavirus cases and its death toll is rising daily. But the leaders of the ruling party are focused on internal party fighting for years instead of adopting measures to contain the virus. The country which was ravaged by an earthquake in 2015 got a majority of government after years of political turmoil and instability but it couldn’t run good governance as expected by people. So, for now, going for a fresh mandate gives people a chance to elect the right leaders.
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