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Power struggle

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

Nepali politicians are so predictable it’s kind of getting boring. Days after the demise of former Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala, top players in Nepali Congress have started their bids for the party’s presidency, and not amicably. The contest is between Sher Bahadur Deuba and Sushil Koirala. Nepalnews writes:

The conflict surfaced after NC senior leader Sher Bahadur Deuba and acting president Sushil Koirala refused to go to each other’s house for an informal meeting on Monday and Tuesday.

Nepali Congress has been talking about a group leadership of the party. But, at a meeting on Wednesday, Deuba laid his claims to the post. Nagarik elaborates:

“Two Congress parties united to form Nepali Congress,” Deuba said. “Girijababu was the president of our party. But I was the second-in-line.”

Deuba said he was ready to lead the party on his own, adding “I ran a party once, baba.”

Sushil Koirala isn’t so sure. As Nagarik further writes:

“There are no successors in a democratic party,” [Koirala] said. “I don’t know about any claims. Whatever the party decides will happen.”

And, a similar drama is ongoing at the High Level Political Mechanism, where both Nepali Congress and UCPN (Maoist) have staked leadership. Nepalnews writes:

Nepali Congress leaders today said the leadership of HLPM should remain within the NC while the Maoist leaders said they should get it as theirs is the largest party

Here we thought the High Level Political Mechanism was set up to sort out the differences between the political parties over the constitution and the peace process. But, we must first wait for them to figure out who is going to lead it. On Wednesday, the hawkish Maoist leader Mohan Baidya made a case for his party. From Republica:

Stating that Koirala´s demise has brought about a political vacuum in Nepali politics, Baidya said it has now become the responsibility of the Maoist party to fulfill Koirala´s wish.

While the political parties are arguing, the recently deposed monarch of Nepal has appeared from the shadows to state that the end of the monarchy is a figment of our imagination. Republica writes:

“First of all I do not think that monarchy has come to an end. This is hypothetical proposition,” [Gyanendra] Shah said in an exclusive interview with Avenues TV to be aired at 8 p.m. Wednesday.

“If we turn the pages of history, such ups and downs and exits and entries are common place. We must leave it to the people to review whether monarchy has come to an end,” Shah said.

Does this mean the newest republic of the world is a republic no more?

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