Not Much Headache Left For This CA

Having played a crucial role in bringing the Maoists back in the mainstream, Dr. Shekhar Koirala, nephew of B.P and G.P. Koirala, is out of mainstream politics in Nepali Congress. Dr. Koirala spoke to NEW SPOTLIGHT on various issues of contemporary p

March 8, 2014, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol: 07 No. -17 Mar. 07- 2014 (Falgun 23, 2070)

As you supported the position taken by prime minister Sushil Koirala earlier on the issue of not handing over Home Ministry to CPN-UML, don’t you feel hurt when prime minister Koirala reversed his decision. How do you look at this?

I never said the sky would fall if the prime minister handed over the Home Ministry to CPN-UML. In the prime ministerial system, the prime minister is supreme and his decision prevails. In case of resignation of prime minister, the government will fall. It is not the same with deputy.

Then, why did you oppose the move?

My point is that internal and external security is vital in the national context. Had the home ministry remained with the prime minister, it would have been easier and convenient for governance. In a political understating, it is not a debatable issue.

If that is so, why was the cabinet formation delayed for so long?

Had the issue settled politically, it would have been much better. All the issues are now past and the government has now to deliver the promises it has made.

How do you see the possibility of writing the new constitution in a year?

Given the present mandate of the people, we have to promulgate the new constitution in a year. Although it was delayed by a few months, the time has not run out. We can still promulgate the new constitution within a year.

At a time when Constituent Assembly is yet to endorse Constituent Assembly Rules and Conduct of  Business of Legislature Parliament, how can you say that the parties in the Constituent Assembly will agree on the fundamentals of constitution?

As we have already settled most of the issues in the previous CA, I don’t think there is much of a headache left for now. Once the CA approves CA Rules and Conduct of Business of Legislature-Parliament, the constitution making process will start. I am confident that this CA will promulgate the new constitution.

As political parties are yet to settle many structural issues related to constitution, how can you write the new constitution?

So far as issues of new constitution are concerned, we have settled almost 90 percent of the issues for the new constitution. Of course, it will take a little bit of time, but we will find out ways. Since Nepal has made so many impossible tasks possible, we will settle the constitutional issues, too.

It is reported that there is a growing disenchantment over the selection process of ministers in Nepali Congress. How do you look at this?

In a democratic party likes Nepali Congress, it is natural to have differences of opinion. Every individual has the right to express his or her own views. However, nobody goes for rebellion on the agenda like selection process.

How do you see the possibility of holding the elections for local bodies?

As local bodies are the foundation of a democratic process, we must hold their elections. After the expiry of the tenure of local bodies in 2001, Nepal has not had elected local bodies. People are facing a lot of problems at the local level. There is the need of local bodies to accelerate the development activities at the grass roots level.

At a time when UCPN-Maoist and Madhesh based parties are opposing the elections of the local bodies arguing that there is no reason to hold the election without making Nepal federal, what do yoy say?

Holding the local elections is not against the spirit of federalism but it is a way to empower the people at the grass root level. We can create federal structures even after holding the elections. The elected representatives of local bodies will be supportive in creating federation. I don’t think UCPN-Maoist and Madhesh based parties are against the local elections.

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