Fringe parties ask NC not to withdraw from Nepal PM race

Nepali Congress has been asked by twelve small political parties in Nepal not to withdraw its candidacy from the Prime Ministerial race.

Kathmandu: Nepali Congress has been asked
by twelve small political parties in Nepal not to withdraw its
candidacy from the Prime Ministerial race until the Maoists
agree on a time-bound plan for integration of its former
guerrilla force and drafting of a new constitution.

Leaders of Sadvhavana Party, Rastriya Janashakti
Party, Rastriya Prajatantra Party, CPN-ML, Chure Bhawar
Rastriya Party, Federal Democratic National Party, Nepal
Family Party, CPN (Samyukta), Tarai Madhes Democratic Party
were among those present at the meeting with the Nepali
Congress leadership today.

"Political uncertainty will worsen further if Nepali
Congress` candidacy is withdrawn without reaching a broad
agreement on key issues," said Prem Bahadur Singh, president
of Samajwadi Prajatantrik Janta Party Nepal.

Nepali Congress leader R C Poudyal, the sole candidate
for the post of Prime Minister, yesterday failed in his ninth
attempt in a row to garner a majority in parliament,
prolonging Nepal`s political uncertainty.

"We have been insisting that the Maoists must come up
with a work plan to transform itself into a civilian party by
disassociating the party from its combatants before starting
fresh election process for the post of Prime Minister," said
Chandra Dev Joshi, Chairman of CPN (Samyukta).

According to Nepali Congress sources, the leaders of
various political parties suggested the Nepali Congress should
not to withdraw its candidacy unless consensus is forged on
the peace process, constitution drafting and government

The parties have decided to call on Speaker Subhas
Nemwang to take the initiative to end the current deadlock,
Poudyal said.

They blamed the Maoists for the ongoing political
crisis, Poudyal added.

The Maoists had asked the Prime Minister to resign in
the name of national consensus, but now they want to grab
power by hook or by crook, he underlined.

Following Maoist chief Prachanda`s failure to get
majority support in Parliament seven times in a row, he
withdrew from the election on September 17 after a deal with
the CPN-UML in bid to facilitate the formation of a national
consensus government.

Three months after the 22-party coalition led by Prime
Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal collapsed, nine rounds of poll
have failed to elect a new leader. The country has been
without a government since June 30, when Nepal stood down
under intense pressure from the Maoists.

CPN-Maoist, which ended its decade-long civil war in
2006, is the single largest party with 238 seats in the
Assembly, while Nepali Congress has 114 members in the House
whose two-year term was extended by one year on May 28.

Nepali Congress has ruled out the possibility of
forming the next government under the Maoists` leadership as
the former rebels have not yet laid down arms, managed their
combatants and dissolved the paramilitary organization of its
youth wing, Young Communist League.