In spite of this devastating natural disaster, now is the time for our political, social, religious, business and intellectual leaders to unite and shine for the country and her people.We can surely find a few true sons and daughters of Nepal who can lead this country during this national crisis and spark the hope. More than anything else, what is needed now is that the leaders to put aside their political, social, and religious ideologies and come together as a united force.
In Nepal, the word, “lead and leaders” has been hijacked of its true meaning for far too long. The Nepalese people are both wary and weary of those whom they put in charge to take them into the 21st century. This country has been raped and abused over and over again. Nepalese have been victimized of lying, cheating, conniving,and dishonest, corrupt, sneaky, and deceiving behavior of the very leaders they elected. This has to stop now! Show the people that you, the elected leaders, honor and truly follow the oath of the office you took.
Fortunately this natural calamity has united the general public. They took care of themselves by finding a safe place, sleeping on the street and dealing with extreme conditions of frequent earthquake, rain and chilly nights and more importantly helping and comforting one another. They found solace among their many foreign friends, big and small. For that Nepal and all Nepalese living here or abroad are truly grateful.
Constitution as a spark of hope:If our elected leaders really care for this country, if they understand the true pain and suffering of the people,they should immediately finalize the constitution. This will serve as a spark to rekindle the hope that is much needed. Seeing some of these opportunist leaders infront of the relief linesand touching the materials before being distributed to the victims demeans us all. They neither collected the relief materials nor packaged them. Our leaders are not any better than those relief agencies that have refused to give aid until a copy of the bible is also accepted. This is the height of disgusting and arrogant behavior.
Thousands of local volunteers, nonprofit organizations, Nepalese army, police force, security personals, government officials, international agencies, health personals, students and volunteers from foreign countries have been engaged in various aid activities. They are doing a truly commending and heart-warming job.
During this time of extreme difficulties, Nepalese people deservehonesty and unconditional services from their leaders. Since the primary responsibility of our leaders is to give a constitutionto this country,they must come to terms with the reality of the situation immediately. Let all of us not forget thatthey are paid to prepare a constitution and yet they have failed to do so.This will give the much needed hope and open the door to build a New Nepal. A constitution will serve as a foundation for a new, prosperous, stronger and united country.
Continuation of relief efforts:While Nepal is trying to move forward from this calamity, relief efforts should be continued until every citizen feels that they are cared for by their government and no one is left out.
Dismantle of high-rise buildings and houses:In consideration of public safety, it will be wise to dismantle those high-rises and houses that have sustained cracks and damages. Most of these high-rises have been built without a soil test and safety standards.If government gives the public a green light to move back to cracked and damaged buildings, then the safety of the occupants must be guaranteed by the developers, and governmentoffice that issues the permit must be held responsible.
Planned construction:New constructionand renovation works should be carried out in a planned and a systematic manner, provided that the buildings are earthquake proof. Perhaps we need to consider the Japanese building and construction techniques. Make no mistake, going back to usual haphazard constructions and renovation work will cost us more dearly than we can imagine. Now to build or to rebuild, among many affecting factors, we must consider the environmental issues, safety of people, reflection of social, cultural and aesthetic aspects.
Coordination of relief and construction funds: It is recommended that the government of Nepal should establish a separate entity that is free of corruption and unnecessary bureaucratic red tape to beresponsible for relief and construction activities. All private and public donations must be accounted and coordinated by this agency. This entity would also be given the authority to accept as well as to refuse the aid.
This is a chance for our leaders to energize the public and honestly engage in building a New Nepal that is economically prosperous, socially civilized and united and politically responsible, transparent and mature. Leaders, be a spark to rekindle the hope of the Nepalese people. In spite of this expectation, I may be foolish to believe that our leaders care for their motherland and her children. If they fail to deliver a constitution in a timely manner, then, they should resign and admit that they are not fit to lead Nepal.