Political Instability: A Bane For The Country

 

Uttam Maharjan

 

Nepal is going through a bad patch nowadays due to political instability, which is the cachet of the country. Since the abolition of the monarchy and introduction of the republican setup, there have been political ups and downs in the country. This is due mainly to differences  between the major political parties.

 

Opportunists

The political parties are strange. They are fickle-minded. They change partnerships and make strange bedfellows as the occasion arises for political gains. They are opportunists and assume a narcissistic attitude.

For the development of any country, political stability is a must. There is hardly any time when the country is politically stable. The constitution of the country was promulgated last year in line with the republican setup. Promulgating the constitution is a major achievement made possible by the 2062/63 People’s Movement and the abolition of the monarchy. But what is even more important is its implementation.

Implementing the constitution is no small deal. Formulating relevant laws and holding elections to the local, provincial and federal governments are indeed a challenge. The Oli-led government, the other day, brought out a timetable for holding the elections by January of 2018. In the meantime, the political landscape has witnessed some twists and turns. Amid such twists and turns, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli had to step down, being unable to stand up to the no-trust motion against him contrary to his earlier stand that he would face the no-trust motion rather than resign. 

The country came to such a pass after the Nepali Congress, CPN Maoist Centre and some other parties registered the no-trust motion against the Oli-led government. This sorry state of affairs arose due to Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli himself. The Prime Minister had assured Maoist strongman Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda through a gentlemen’s agreement that he would hand over the mantle of government to him after the budget was announced. Later, he reneged on the agreement, saying that he had not made any such agreement with Prachanda. This infuriated Prachanda, compelling him to take a drastic move. Some quarters have opined that the move was taken at the behest of India. If so, it would constitute blatant interference in the internal affairs of the country by India.

It may be recalled that Prime Minister Oli got a snub from late Prime Minister Sushil Koirala when the latter flatly refused to hand over the reins of government to the former after the constitution had been promulgated by breaching the gentlemen’s agreement between them. KP Sharma Oli then became the Prime Minister by defeating Sushil Koirala in the voting with the support of the CPN-Maoist Centre and some other parties. Now, Prachanda has played the same trump by forging an alliance with the Nepali Congress and some other parties.

The above incidents are typical ones that have been taking place in the political circle for years. The reasons for the recurrence of such incidents are not hard to come by. Coming to power by hook or by crook is the main mantra of the political parties. They use every kind of stratagem to grab power. They do not care about what impact their actions will have on the nation and the people.

It has been just nine months since the Oli-led government was installed. There remains a little over one year for the elections to the local, provincial and federal governments to take place. This is the time when all the parties, ruling, opposition and other fringe parties, should work in tandem to implement the constitution. After the elections, the country is expected to go republic in a full-fledged manner. This is the need of the hour.

But au contraire, the political parties are showing undemocratic attitudes. The Nepali Congress and the CPN-Maoist Centre have even agreed to rule the country on a nine-month rotation  basis as if the government were their fiefdom. Here, a plausible question crops up: what will happen if the CPN-Maoist Centre refuses to hand over power to the Nepali Congress after nine months? Will the Nepali Congress bring in a no-trust motion against the CPN-Maoist Centre then?        

The game of power being played in the political arena for years does not bode well for the country. The obsession of the political parties with grabbing power by using any means, fair or foul, is highly objectionable. Such behaviour on the part of the political parties has overshadowed the development agendas of the country. This is one of the reasons why the country has remained underdeveloped although it has been six decades since the concept of planned development got off the ground in 2013 B.S.

 

Greed for power

Therefore, it is high time the political parties shed their greed for power and devoted their time and energies to the development of the country and the relief of the people. Today’s burning agendas include the implementation of the constitution, rehabilitation of the natural calamity victims and reconstruction of the infrastructure damaged/destroyed by the April earthquake. So the political parties should come out of the cocoon of personal and partisan interests and apply their assiduities to the development of the country. This will help bring about political stability in the country, which may be treated as a stepping stone to all-round development.  

 

 

 

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