Dissatisfaction within ruling coalition, minor parties warn to quit government


January 3, 2024


Dissatisfaction within ruling coalition, minor parties warn to quit government

Major political leaders/File photo.

KATHMANDU: Dissatisfaction is looming among smaller parties over the Nepali Congress and the CPN-Maoist Center’s readiness to accommodate the CPN-UML in the name of consensus for the National Assembly (NA) election.

The Janata Samajbadi, CPN-Unified Socialist, and Janamat Party maintain that they won’t collaborate with the UML in the NA election. They express resentment, having been left out even in recent coalition meetings.

One component of the coalition, the Janamat Party Chairman Dr. CK Raut, raised his displeasure over not being invited to the coalition meeting. He remarks, “Where does the opportunity for people of the Madhes go in power? All significant and older leaders claim their rights.” He also emphasizes the lack of information about the meeting, stating, “If decisions are made after the coalition, why are we only informed after decisions?”

According to a leader from another party, the UML and Maoist Center have sought to negotiate for the NA election. He states, “We’ve observed this negotiation sought by the UML and Maoist Center. We’re not naive. Giving seats to the UML is like defying the norms of election itself as it makes one feel that the politics has been syndicated by major parties. Elections must take place in democracy. Why does this coalition need to exist if the UML joins?”

Similarly, even the Unified Socialist Party warns that if they join hands with the UML in the election, Unified Socialist might not continue in the coalition.

The Shekhar-Gagan faction of NC, another major component of the ruling coalition, also opposes collaborating with the UML in the National Assembly election.

A leader from this faction mentions, “It’s not appropriate for the opposition to cooperate with the government. Whether the NC should ally with the UML or retain the existing coalition; this has to be settled.”

Amid discussions regarding the NA election, although the UML managed to postpone transitional justice-related bills and ‘bargaining’ for NA seats, the coalition partners are skeptical about UML’s role in the days ahead. Even the Maoist Center General Secretary Dev Gurung points out the need for a consensus government.

The component of the coalition, the Nagarik Unmukti Party, also seems inclined to incorporate the UML but asserts the need for a single seat for themselves in the January 25 election.

Political analyst Shyam Shrestha considers the debate about including the UML in NA as natural. However, he is also surprised to see the opposition’s desire for power.