Saturday , September 22 2018

No Trust

editPrachanda’s Maoist Center now insists that his party merger must take place prior to the formation of government. K.P. Oli’s CPN/UML is so much in a hurry to form government that it wants prime minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to initiate the process of vacating government and ease his entry as the party with the decisive numbers for government after the successful conclusion of elections. The prime minister, on the other hand, says the election process is yet to be over and that the lower ands upper houses will be summoned after results to both are announced by the election commission. It turns out that constitutional provisions regarding the upper house remain pending and papers regarding such await a presidential decree and has been with the president for promulgation since the past two months. This merry go round has sent our partisan lawyers, intellectuals and journalists orchestrating their support of this or that political party confusing the issue further. It may sound equally partisan on our part to state that the elections are only over after the election commission says so and that is when the president must summon the new legislature where the party with the majority will assume government after the majority is proven and that is when the the prime minister who has lost a majority in government must bow out. Confusingly the ‘Left’ support cite democratic norms and values in their demand for an immediate handover of government referring to the fact that it is only the lower house that elects the prime minister. The fact is that democratic norms not prescribe the immediacy of government formation as much as it does the conclusion of elections. The impediment actually lies in the inconclusiveness of the drafting of the constitution that requires a presidential decree on the upper house which has at this stage become the bone of contention. The president of course hails from the CPN/UML.
Of course, such contentions on partisan interpretations of the constitutional process have been the bane of Nepali democracy since its re-institution in the country. Indeed, it is such interpretations actually allowed the organized waylaying of the Nepali monarchy—the guardian of the constitution and the symbol of national unity were demanded a partisan role by each of the major political parties backed by their partners in the media and sponsored by what is clearly a now foreign backer. Push comes to shove; the president who is currently sitting on the decree bills will have the UML to resist the deliberate controversy, something the king was deprived of. But the latest tussle on a constitution that, even after the elections, contrary to claims, remains yet to be implemented, actually highlights the utter lack of trust in the political sector prevailing among themselves and the political process. It is this that prompts common sense to call anticipates a crash at any corner and turn of the constitution. As it is, the conclusion of the polls is merely the conclusion of the implementation phase of a constitution which everyone now realizes has been costly in time, currency and values. It would be wise to brace oneself for disaster in case our masters fail to agree.

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