Nepal headed towards majority-based government

Kathmandu, Feb 2: Nepal is inching towards a majority-based government after the Nepali Congress (NC) failed to garner enough support from other political parties to form a consensus-based government Sunday.

A last ditch effort to form a consensus-based government with support of all 29 political parties in the house ended Sunday after the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UPCN-M) and the Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal (RPP-N), along with several others, decided to stay in the opposition.

Only 16 out of 29 parties have extended their support to the NC-led government and the rest have just offered best wishes to the NC during an all-party meeting called by the party in a bid to garner support.

The NC has already conveyed to the parliament secretariat and the president’s office that the prospect of forming a consensus government has faded.

With the president’s deadline to convene a consensus government expiring Sunday, a majority government appears to be the best bet now.

NC president Sushil Koirala, who is also the sole prime ministerial candidate at present, called President Ram Baran Yadav over telephone Sunday and made clear that the chances of forming a consensus government have ended and asked him to call for a majority-based government according to the constitutional provision.

If the president calls for installing a majority-based government, the first and the second largest parties in Nepal house, the NC and the Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist-Leninist (CPN-UML), will be the natural allies and are likely to join hands with others parties.

The CPN-UML has extended support to the NC’s bid to lead the next government but both sides are yet to reach an agreement on power sharing.

“The Maoists and the RPP-N rejected being part of the new government so the prospect of consensus-based government remains elusive. We have now decided to go for a majority-based government as an alternative,” said NC leader Minendra Rijal.

IANS