Democracy and Federalism (February 10 to 15, 2019)


Democracy and Federalism

Bill on civil servants transfer against federalism, say lawmakers

Recently proposed bill on civil servants adjustment has been opposed by both ruling and opposition parties in the parliament. The bill registered today at the Federal Parliament Secretariat, by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration states that chief secretaries of provinces, secretaries of provincial ministries and chief administrative officials of local governments will be appointed by the federal government. The bill further states that there will be a center committee under federal government for deploying the employees.

There’s more to Oli-Dahal rift than meets the eye

With the association of Nepalese leaders over Venezuela’s series of event and the chaos it created, transitional justice is another issue creating fractures inside NCP. While the UN has asked Nepal to clarify its intentions on transitional justice process, PK Dahal’s unease grew to the level where he warned that the country could possibly see another Maoist force if the peace process is taken lightly. The government wants to take all war-era issues to the Supreme Court and finalize it with punishments, while PK Dahal wants to settle the issue by punishing only those who are convicted. Maoist leader Gajurel told that, national and international forces are trying to trap Maoist by slowly deflecting from the peace agreement.

Ruling partner FSFN accuses PM of interference

CM of province 2, Lal Babu Raut’s frequent allegation of Oli’s government being anti-federal is becoming a topic of concern to the NCP leaders. FSFN being a coalition partner of NCP, has been now attacking Oli’s government for not willing to decentralize power to other tiers of the government. Raut has reported that due to delay in transferring resources and formulating laws, the work in provincial level is at halt. NCP leaders are accusing FSFN chairman Upendra Yadav for attacking Oli led government through Raut. NCP is also not happy with FSFN for supporting Govinda KC’s cause against the government. NCP has further made it clear that if FSFN continues its actions against the ruling party, the party will rethink about its relation with FSFN.

Oli skips event to mark People’s War anniversary

NCP co-chairman Oli skipped People’s War Day celebration at the headquarters in 13 February 2019. This is the indication that Oli do not support the party celebrating the occasion. Communist leaders like Madhav Nepal were absent during the program saying NCP never formally agreed to celebrate People’s War Day. It is reported that Oli did not want to disappoint the UML leaders who were against the decision of celebrating the occasion.

NCP threatens to get Pathak impeached

The lawmakers of NCP are preparing to impeach Commissioner of the Commission for the investigation of Abuse of Authority Raj Narayan Pathak, who is accused of taking Rs7.8 million in bribe to settle a case. As Oli’s government is for zero tolerance on corruption, NCP leaders urged Oli to impeach Pathak. The process of impeachment has been already moved forward.

Bill to replace Civil Servant Adjustment Ordinance flayed

The parliament showed dissatisfaction on the bill that is to replace the Civil Servant Adjustment Ordinance. The panel have decided to pass the bill only after the proposed amendments will be considered. 81 amendments have been proposed by the lawmakers on the bill. Majority of the lawmakers are against the bill and considering it against the spirit of the constitution.

PM inaugurates country’s first shipping office

PM Oli’s inaugurated Nepal’s first shipping office to build inland waterways to promote international trade. This development will facilitate movement of goods and people. PM Oli said that, with this development Nepal cannot be completely called a landlocked country, and the office shall provide employment and services to people. It has been reported that this will reduce the cost of transportation of goods. On Nepal’s request, India has already proceeded to provide Nepal access to its water ways.

PM Employment Program draws mixed reactions

PMEP launched on Wednesday met mixed reactions from the experts, stressing the fact that the program entirely depends on government’s capacity to implement the program and employee’s ability to perform. PMEP ensures a minimum of 100 days employment opportunity to alleviate poverty in long run. The government has enlisted 13 probable job areas where the population would be employed. The experts argued that the program should not be a scheme to woo the party cadres, and if it is not well implemented, then the program will be a liability and will have heavy leakage in the budget.

Government pushes IT bill to control social media

To have control over foreign social media operators in Nepal, the government has proposed a law to mandatorily register all social media platforms within the country. The bill restricts the operation of any social media sites after a certain period of time, if not registered in the country. This bill registered by the Minister of Communication and Information Technology also propose the government to order social media sites to remove any content against the government policies. The government has proposed sentences for offences related to social media, inciting crime, posing threat to peace and order, promoting caste based discrimination, human trafficking and advertising of illegal products, cyber bullying, and production and publication of pornographic content.

Government mobilizing people’s money for hydropower development

The government is now launching a program to mobilize people’s money on hydropower. The government is said to have completed all the formalities regarding the program implementation. This program is introduced to utilize the resources of the general public in hydropower projects to build a resilient economy. However is has not made clear as to how general public will be able to invest in the project.

Photo: Sushma Bhatta

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