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Prachanda Won’t Go Without a Fight

The latest decision of the Nepal PM comes after the Nepali Congress and CPN-UML have struck a midnight deal to form a new alliance…reports Asian Lite News

Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has decided to face the vote of confidence and not resign immediately.

Secretary of the CPN-Maoist Center, Devendra Paudel confirmed to ANI that PM Prachanda would take the floor test and not step down from the post.

“He will not resign. He has decided to take the vote of confidence, test the mathematics. The office bearers meeting also has decided to support the decision of PM for which talks will be held with various parties including the Rastriya Swotantra Party (RSP), Nepali Congress and even the CPN-UML and move forward,” Paudel confirmed ANI over phone.

The latest decision of the Nepal PM comes after the Nepali Congress and CPN-UML have struck a midnight deal to form a new alliance.

As per the agreement signed in between Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba and the UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli, an agreement of sharing one and half year’s tenure each has been reached in between the leaders.

KP Sharma Oli will lead the new government expected to be formed soon for one and half years and then will hand over to Sher Bahadur Deuba for the remaining one and half year term until the next election.

Along with the new alliance also has formed a committee to give suggestions on amending the election procedures and the constitution under the leadership of former Chief Justice Kalyan Shrestha.

In the overnight agreement, the largest and the second largest party in the parliament also drafted a constitutional amendment agreement where it was stated that the Vice President would be made the chairman of the National Assembly.

Right before the signing of the agreement, leaders from the Congress as well as the UML also had reached President Ram Chandra Paudel and informed about the change in the coalition.

During the meeting, the leaders informed the President about activating Section 76 (2) to form a new government in case the incumbent Prime Minister failed to take a vote of confidence after UML withdrew its support.

Prachanda should take the vote of confidence again from the parliament after any of the parties on board the government withdraw support. Dahal who came to power right after the 2022 General Election already have taken the floor of parliament test for a record four times.

Earlier on March 4, Dahal made a surprising turn by deciding to revive a coalition with the CPN-UML which caught the largest coalition partner, NC, off guard.

A new coalition including the CPN-UML, CPN-Maoist Center, Rastriya Swatantra Party, and Janata Samajwadi Party was initially formed. The following day (on 5th March), the Nepali Congress formally retracted support to the Dahal government activating the Article 100 Sub-section (2). A Prime Minister is required to cross the threshold of 50 percent which is 138 votes as per the present number of parliamentarians.

The Janata Samajbadi Party Nepal walked out of the government after the formal split and is now in opposition.

The former Maoist rebel leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal nom de guerre Prachanda came to power in December 2022 when he aligned with arch-rival CPN-UML duping the Nepali Congress with whom he had forged alliance in November 2022 election.

The vote of confidence on January 10, 2023, resulted in extensive support for Dahal when he got a staggering 99 per cent vote, the highest in the known history of the Nepali parliament since the establishment of democracy. A total of 268 parliamentarians out of 270 present in that meeting had voted in favour of Dahal.

Within 3 months, Dahal dumped CPN-UML to walk out of government again aligning with Nepali Congress and managed to secure a majority in the vote of confidence on March 20, 2023. In the second round of the vote of confidence, Dahal got 172 votes out of 262 lawmakers present at the time of voting. Only 89 votes came in against Dahal while one member abstained from voting. (ANI)

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