Political drama in Nepal: PM Oli, Opposition alliance stake claims to form govt

·2-min read
Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli
Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli

Kathmandu [Nepal], May 21 (ANI): Nepal embattled Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on Friday staked a claim for the prime minister's post, a day after recommending President Bidya Devi Bhandari to initiate the process for the formation of a new government.

According to the Himalayan Times, PM Oli reached Nepal President Bhandari's official residence a few couple of minutes ahead of the opposition leaders.

Later, an alliance of opposition parties reached the official residence of President Bidya Devi Bhandari to stake a claim for the formation of a new government.

On Thursday, however, Prime Minister Oli expressed unwillingness to undergo another floor test to prove his government's majority in the House of Representatives.

The Himalayan nation plunged into political turmoil after Prime Minister Oli lost a vote of confidence in the Parliament early this month. The political uncertainty comes at a time when the nation is facing a devastating surge of COVID-19 cases.

Taking to Twitter, Bishnu Rimal, Chief Advisor to Nepal PM Oli said: "Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has claimed for the post of Prime Minister in accordance with Article 76 (5) of the Constitution."

"The demand letter has been signed by Chairman Mahanta Thakur and parliamentary party leader Rajendra Mahato and UML chairman and party leader KP Sharma Oli on behalf of the party," he added.

According to Rimal, 121 lawmakers from the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) and 32 lawmakers from the Janata Samajbadi Party have signed in support of PM Sharma Oli.

A total of 153 signatures have been submitted to President by PM Oli, says Rimal.

Meanwhile, the opposition parties including the Nepali Congress (NC), CPN (Maoist Center), the Upendra Yadav-faction of Janata Samajbadi Party (JSP) and the ruling CPN-UML's Madhav Nepal faction has claimed to have the support of 149 lawmakers of the House of Representatives (HoR), Himalayan Times reported.

President Bidya Devi Bhandari, on Thursday, asked the lawmakers to stake claim for the premiership by 5 PM on Friday.

The alliance has proposed the name of NC President and Parliamentary Party Leader Sher Bahadur Deuba as the new Prime Minister to succeed incumbent Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli.

After losing a trust vote on May 10, Oli was re-appointed as Prime Minister under Article 76 (3) as leader of the party with the highest number of members in the lower house.

Such a Prime Minister is required to seek a vote of confidence in parliament within one month of the appointment as per Article 76(4) of the Constitution.

After Oli failed the vote of trust in parliament, President Bhandari had called on oppositions to come forward with a majority number to claim over the post of Prime Minister.

But the opposition failed in gathering support for Sher Bahadur Deuba who was seen as the fore-runner in the fray to become the next premier of the Himalayan nation. (ANI)

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