Two months after the successful conclusion of historic parliamentary polls, Prime Minister of Nepal Sher Bahadur Deuba on Thursday resigned, setting the stage for a Left-front alliance to form the next government in the Himalayan nation. The CPN-UML picked party chairman Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli as the next premier, who now requires support from the Maoists to secure a majority. “A Standing Committee (SC) of the party held in Lalitpur city named Oli as the prime ministerial candidate as he is also the UML’s Parliamentary Party leader,” PTI quoted senior party leader Surendra Pandey as saying.
Giving nod to a formal merger between the CPN-UML and the CPN Maoist Centre, the committee decided to officially claim formation of the next government with the support from CPN Maoist Centre led by former PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’. Months ago, the two communist parties had made a decision to jointly contest the parliamentary and provincial elections.
Pandey said that Oli and Prachanda will co-chair the new Communist Party and split the premiership on a rotational basis. He also said, “Modalities for the rotation of the premiership, merger of the parties, and the organisation and political doctrine of the new party will be decided by forming a task force by both parties. The process of government formation and merger of the parties will go hand in hand.”
The Left Alliance of the CPN-UML, led by Oli and CPN-Maoist Centre had in December secured 174 seats in the 275-member Parliament in the historic provincial and parliamentary polls that many hope will bring much-needed political stability to the Himalayan nation. It had also secured an overwhelming majority in the upper house of Parliament with 39 seats, paving the way for the leftist alliance to form the country’s next government.
Oli, 65, served as the country’s prime minister from October 11, 2015 to August 3, 2016. He is known for his pro-China stance.
(With PTI inputs)