Nepal Minute - out of the ordinary

Elections 2022

Nepal has wrapped up a hectic, year-round electoral campaign, electing its federal parliament and seven provincial assemblies in November, and 753 local bodies earlier in May. 

Flanked by five fellow election commissioners, Chief Election Commissioner Dinesh Thapaliya made public the consolidated results of the November 20 elections for the House of Representatives and provincial assemblies.

The Commission is scheduled to submit its final report to President Bidhya Devi Bhandari on Thursday (December 15). The provincial assembly results will be submitted to the respective governors on Saturday (December 17).

Once the results are handed over to the president and the provincial governors, the Commission will turn its attention to getting the names of all 825 elected representatives published in Nepal Gazette.

“Submission of the report to the president will swing open the doors for government formation,” Chief Election Commissioner Thapaliya told shortly after packed press conference at the Commission’s media centre.

Thapaliya said: “The President can then invite political parties to stake a claim to form the government. Actually, a government can take shape even before the newly elected Members of Parliament are administered the oath of office and secrecy.”

However, the report will not include any recommendation or the Commission’s comments surrounding the electoral process.

Tasks ahead

Thapaliya said the Commission would next turn its focus on issuing a new, comprehensive and complete set of electoral laws. 

The Chief Commissioner said: “Currently, there are eight different laws; yet they leave too many questions unanswered. Also, some of the laws are mutually contradictory and should be consolidated into one comprehensive document. The Commission has more or less finalised the draft, which will be submitted to the House.

“Our aim is to submit it to the first session of the House itself.”

Often, Thapaliya said, the existing laws are silent and the Commission cannot take a particular call. “This is why we want a comprehensive and completely new set of laws. We are not for amendments in the existing acts and laws. Removing and adding a couple of things here and there will not suffice. There are just too many things to be addressed.” 

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