Nepali Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba inducted eight ministers into the government on Saturday. The new ministers — three with cabinet rank and four minister of state — are from the pro-Hindu, pro-monarchy Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP). RPP chief Kamal Thapa was inducted as the Deputy Prime Minister.
Deuba, however, did not sack the Maoist ministers in the government, even though the Communist Party has defected to the opposition Left alliance. The new entrants will remain without portfolio as the Nepali Congress heading the coalition government has asked the Maoists to quit so that the Prime Minister ‘does not have to sack them’.
The portfolio allocation will take place only after the Maoist ministers are out of the government, sources said. The induction, which took place barely five hours before the Parliament’s tenure ended, led opposition leader K P Oli to accuse Prime Minister Deuba of violating the electoral code of conduct.
Deuba, however, insisted that inducting ministers after the election process has begun does not violate the code of conduct. Speaking during the farewell session of the House, Communist Party of Nepal chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal said the recent Left alliance in Nepal was not against anyone, nor was it against any country, but was an alliance of like-minded parties on ideological grounds with Nepal’s political stability and prosperity as the common goal.