Eleven prominent leaders of the ruling NCP-UML party have called Prime Minister K P Oli a “dictator” and appealed to the party rank and file to actively oppose him.
The joint statement by the leaders ― all members of the party’s powerful standing committee, including former PMs Jhala Nath Khanal and Madhav Kumar Nepal ― comes in wake of Oli assuming sweeping powers to seek clarification and suspend any leader for “indiscipline”. Oli also suspended Madhav Nepal and Bhim Rawal from the primary membership of the party for six months, warning this was their “last chance” at redemption.
In their statement, the NCP-UML leaders said Oli was “making every attempt to impose dictatorship” by misusing state power and converting the “official residence (of the Prime Minister) into the venue for factional interest”. They accused Oli of being “determined to disintegrate the party” and of “defaming” any leader who challenged his “dictatorship”.
The revolt by the NCP-UML leaders appears to be triggered by the suspension of Madhav Nepal and Rawal, which also coincided with the circulation of an internal party circular ostensibly to “rescue the country from external interference”, for “purification and consolidation” of the party and to rid it from “rampant indiscipline”.
Meanwhile, Oli seemed all set to expel two more dissident leaders ― Surendra Pandey and Ghanshyam Bhushal, both signatories to the statement ― for anti-disciplinary activities.
Bhushal, in response to the showcause notice issued to him, said he should put on record that Oli was “intolerant towards criticism to the hilt, and he is out to finish any leader not in conformity with his style of functioning” and warned that this was the surest way to take the party towards its demise “ideologically, principally and organisationally”.