Khanal
CPN-UML leader Jhala Nath Khanal

KATHMANDU, Jan 14: The two parties of the left alliance, UML and CPN (Maoist Center) have started discussions for searching candidates for the key posts like president, vice-president, speaker and ministers. But the issue has remained as a challenge for both parties at a time when the unification process is on bench.

President Bidya Devi Bhandari on Saturday hosted a dinner party to the entire family of CPN (Maoist Center) Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal and various other leaders of the left alliance. But with President Bhandari’s term is due to expire in two months because of constitutional provision—the dinner party has also triggered speculation that it was her strategy to lobby for second term as president, reported Republica Daily.

Also, UML Chair KP Oli has also been understood to be in the mood to continue her tenure for the second term since she has served in the position for just two years while the first president served for seven years. But, according to UML sources, the UML leaders are split over whether to continue Bhandari’s tenure for the second term or select a new leader for the presidential position. Some leaders have argued that management of senior leaders like Madhav Kumar Nepal and Jhala Nath Khanal is crucial as failing to administer Nepal and Khanal to a dignified post could amplify factions after the merger.


UML leader Jhala Nath Khanal in an interview with Reporters’ Club Nepal’s president Rishi Dhamala said that he is ready for President, Prime Minister or Party Chair-any job the party hands him over.

“If the party realizes my necessity, I am ready any position whether it be president, prime minister or party chief,” said Khanal.

He however clarified that he has not demanded or put claim on any post. He said, “I am okay even without any post. I am focused on welfare of people and country- I am a leader-positionlessness doesn’t affect me on my duty.”

Khanal also assured that leadership management would be carefully and consciously handled.

“We will manage leadership keeping in view the ideology of late Pushpa Lal Shrestha—which prioritizes party’s principles over leadership. UML has always run on ideological basis. After the merger, party will run in unity. We have collective leaders who will leader the party,” said Khanal.

He, however, said that there are high chances that KP Oli will become the prime minister of the new government. “We are carrying our necessary home work. We will decide paying attention to the circumstance.”


UNITY BEFORE NEW GOVT

He also assured that the merger process between UML and Maoist Center will be concluded before the formation of new government. He said,” I cannot not guarantee you that unification process will be concluded within 15 days. But it is certain that the merger process will be finalized before new government.”

When asked what ideology the merged party will follow, he said, “The party has run on the basis of ‘People’s Multi-party democracy’ for long. We will discuss on proposed new principles. We will soon reach conclusion.”

Khanal also urged the government not to step away from its duty of appointing province chiefs and temporary province capitals owing to disputes and protests.

“The government must immediately name temporary province capitals and governors. It cannot skip the task just to avoid the protest erupted in various cities demanding their home city be declared capital.”

“But the government must be careful while appointing governors. One-sided and random appointments will not be received well.”

“If so, the new government will reverse the decision,” he warned.

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