Expenditure limit for candidates contesting Nepal’s local polls 2022: Here’s how much they can spend

It is believed that the expenditure limit is for the sake of formality as the real expenditure of the candidates goes way too high compared to ceilings set by Election commission. What is the legal limit of money candidates can spend in local polls?

Pragya Lamsal

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Legally, there is a ceiling on expenditure for all candidates contesting local elections 2022.

Article 64 of the Local Level Election Act (2017) states that the expenditure limit for candidates should be within the ceiling specified in the Nepal Gazette.

The act and other laws clearly state that every candidate should abide by the expenditure limit set by the Election Commission Nepal and all candidates are required to submit their expenditure statement to the commission within 30 days of completion of an election.

Local Level Election Regulation (2017) provides a template to submit the expenditure details. Some headings included in the template are: purchase of voter lists, vehicle/horse, fuel/fodder, publicity materials, transport, meeting/cadres’ mobilization, other publicity, print and electronic medium, office operation, representative mobilization and miscellaneous.

In a simple term, expenditure limit refers to the amount a candidate is allowed to spend on election campaigning, including mass meetings, public rallies, cadres’ mobilization, advertisements, posters and banners publication, and vehicle use among others.

Expenditure limit for 2022 local polls

In the new federal setup, Nepal has established seven provinces and 753 local government units with six metropolitan cities, 11 sub-metropolitan cities, 276 municipalities and 460 rural municipalities [popularly known as Gaun Palika].

The Election Commission Nepal has set a different ceiling for the candidates of metropolitan cities, sub-metropolitan cities, municipalities and rural municipalities.

Here are expenditure limit details: