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Oli re-appointed Nepal PM as Oppn parties fail to stake claim

Oli, who had lost a trust vote in the House of Representatives on Monday, will take the oath of office on Friday. He must prove that he has majority support in the House within 30 days.

Written by Yubaraj Ghimire | Kathmandu |
Updated: May 13, 2021 11:11:10 pm
Nepal Prime Minister KP Oli lost the vote of confidence barely three days ago. (File Photo)

K P Sharma Oli was again appointed Nepal’s Prime Minister by President Bidhya Devi Bhandari on Thursday after opposition parties were unable to put together a coalition government by the 9 pm deadline.

Oli, who had lost a trust vote in the House of Representatives on Monday, will take the oath of office on Friday. He must prove that he has majority support in the House within 30 days.

Sher Bahadur Deuba, chief of the main opposition Nepali Congress, had informed his party colleagues and other allies shortly ahead of the deadline that he would not be able to put together a coalition that has majority in the House, and that he was withdrawing from the race.

The formal withdrawal by the leader of the main opposition left the President with no option but to invite Oli to form a government again, since he was the leader of the single-largest party.

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An action-packed day saw 16 members of parliament from the Janata Samajbadi Party (JSP) being taken to a luxury hotel near by Bhaktapur, and kept under strict vigilance, to ensure that they did not join the anti-Oli group in its bid to form the government.

Oli also held discussions with Madhav Kumar Nepal, a rebel leader in Oli’s Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist, and succeeded in persuading the group of 28 rebels against resigning their parliament membership, which they had planned to do on Thursday.

The Nepali Congress had hoped that the potential resignation of the 28, as well as support from a faction of the JSP, would help them cross the half-way mark and form the government. However, neither of the above materialised.

“We will continue talking, and we have deferred the move for resignation for now,” Madhav Nepal said after his meeting with Oli.

Oli had suspended Madhav Nepal and other rebels from party membership for six months. This suspension was withdrawn on Thursday morning, paving the way for conciliatory talks.

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