Kathmandu: During the federal and provincial parliament elections held in November 2022, Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist-Center) together with three more parties formed an alliance.
Nepali Congress leaders compared Maoist chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal with late Girija Prasad Koirala, former president of Nepali Congress. They had justified the formation of the coalition saying that it was to respond to the repeated move of dissolving the parliament by the CPN-UML government led by KP Sharma Oli.
The Oli government had dissolved the parliament three times. The five-party coalition dubbed the move as a “regressive” one and made that an election agenda.
Not only that, leaders of Nepali Congress-Maoist alliance, what the leaders used to say Democrat-Communist alliance, claimed that the alliance would continue for years as it, according to them, was formed to strengthen the democratic values in the country.
Elections ended. Nepali Congress emerged as the largest political party while Maoist became the third largest one. Madhav Nepal’s Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Socialist) also garnered respectable votes due to coalition votes.
When the time came to form a new government, the five-party alliance broke over who would serve the position of Prime Minister for the first term. Nepal Congress president Sher Bahadur Deuba denied Maoist chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal as the Prime Minister for the first term.
Dahal, a politician who has earned a reputation as an unstable leader, immediately approached the second largest party of the parliament CPN-UML for support. KP Sharma Oli, a leader who had categorically denied any form of alliance with Maoist and possibility of Dahal to become the next Prime Minister, took no time to form a new alliance.
The twist and turns did not end there. A few days later, Nepali Congress decided to support PM Dahal’s confidence motion in the parliament.
Now, Nepal’s political parties are once again in the race to revive the old five-party alliance.
Political observers and commentators say that the instability will trigger further frustrations among people. “It appears that the politicians are indifferent to respond to the needs and demands of the people,” said Saugat Gautam, a political commentator. “A group of leaders from major political parties have maintained a stranglehold on the affairs of the state. But they have not taken the public grievances seriously.”
This is not a desirable situation to strengthen the democratic principles in the country, he added. “What is happening in the course of electing the new president will further trigger frustrations among people, who are already suffering from bad governance.”
According to him, politicians, regardless of the political parties, should be in the position to answer why one alliance broke a few months back and revived the old one a few months later. In a democracy, accountability is something people expect from leaders. In the absence of accountability, no system can ignite hope and aspirations.