(Image for Representation)
KATHMANDU: With the local level elections fast approaching, many women who were elected as people’s representatives in the previous election have become aspirants for higher positions. However, there is one deterrent for them to run for office, costly elections.
Many of them are giving a second thought, as the concerned political parties have started saying that it would cost Rs 2 million to Rs 2.5 million even to contest for the post of the ward chair. “I am confident that I win the election if I get a ticket. But I can’t sell my house to spend money on elections,” said Yamuna Acharya, an elected member of Birtamod Municipality-6.
Furthermore, Acharya said that the parties hesitate in giving women the candidature in the election as they do not have the financial capability.
Pavitra Koirala Dhungana, a member of ward no 5 in the same municipality says she is confident of winning the hearts of the people and being elected again, but the political parties have given importance to money leading to frustration. “If parties give tickets only to capable candidates without giving importance to the money they will win the election,” says Koirala.
Likewise, Bhavana Acharya, a member of ward no. 9 said in case my husband has to contest the election, he can sell his property and spends whatever he can, but we don’t have that right, and neither can we contest the election by borrowing. She says that women are financially dependent on others to contest the election.
Women now fear if they are not given tickets based on their capability and contribution to politics rather than based on money, they will be left out of politics. They also said that political corruption was rampant due to costly elections.
In the Jhapa district, the deputy mayors of Mechinagar, Birtamod, Bhadrapur, and Damak municipalities and Buddhashanti rural municipality are learned to have been aspiring to run for the post of Mayor in the upcoming election.