Chitwan: Saturday was a long day for the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist). The closed-door session of the party’s tenth National Congress started five hours later than the scheduled time. And it ended without any conclusion as Chairman KP Oli pushed for a consensus to nominate the members in the central committee and other members until the last moment.
As many as 2,175 representatives have gathered here in Sauraha to select the UML leadership for the next five years. But chairman KP Oli is pushing for a consensus fearing the party would scramble into pieces if the National Congress goes for election, said CPN-UML leaders.
Disregarding the democratic principles stated in the party’s statute, Oli took all the rights to nominate the Central Committee himself. The representatives are now without any business as the Central Committee decided to give the rights to nominate new leadership to Oli. After Oli addressed the closed-door session, Deputy General Secretary Bishnu Poudel proposed that the right to propose the name list of the officials and central committee members be given to Oli. The session agreed to the proposal in no time.
Some leaders, however, opposed the decision.
Oli is hesitating to go into the elections as he wants a consensus in the selection of the officials and members. What will happen to the dissenting voices within the party like Bhim Rawal and Ghanashyam Bhusal? Oli seems reluctant to adjust them within the party. The sharpest thorn for Oli appears to be Rawal, who has declared to vie for the post of chairman, against Oli.
Oli in a dilemma
On Sunday morning, Nepal Live Today caught up with a few leaders and representatives of the CPN-UML. They said Oli fears to go for an election as his close leaders would get no place in the party if they vie for an election. Furthermore, they stated that Oli also fears the party will “splinter into pieces” if they go for an election.
“The party will splinter into pieces as there are many unsatisfied groups within the party,” the leaders echoed.
A leader from ANNFSU said, “The chairperson wants to include leaders close to Madhav Kumar Nepal factions in the committee. If not, the party would again see a split. The move from Oli is seen to adjust all the dissatisfied leaders within the party.”
Oli and his confidants have been arguing that the leadership in Palika level was also elected unanimously. So the National Congress should select new leadership in consensus, too.
Oli is in continuous talks with the leaders, as Bhim Rawal and some other leaders have not withdrawn their claims yet. Some leaders close to Oli say that he is trying to adjust Rawal to forge a consensus.
“His close confidants like Surya Thapa and Bishnu Rimal, among others would lose in elections,” the leaders said.
The closed-door session in Sauraha has already endorsed the proposal to amend the statute of the party made by central committee meeting. The new central committee will have 301 members. There will be a 99 member Politburo and 45 member standing committee. There will be 19 central officials including a chair, a senior vice-chair, six vice-chairs, a general secretary, three deputy general secretaries and seven secretaries.
Oli is in continuous talks with the leaders, as Bhim Rawal and some other leaders have not withdrawn their claims yet. Some leaders close to Oli say that he is trying to adjust Rawal to forge a consensus. “Though there is a spiral of silence in the party, many are riled with Oli,” a leader told Nepal Live Today on condition of anonymity. “So he fears that Rawal may garner a good number of votes if the election takes place.”