CPN-UML Secretary Yogesh Bhattarai has said he will claim for the same post in the upcoming 10th general convention pointing that it is not time for him to claim for the post of vice-chair and there are many seniors below that post.
The party statute has provision for chair, one senior leader, one senior vice-chair, four vice-chairs, one general secretary, one deputy general secretary and seven secretaries. "There is no space for me to go for vice-chair now. There are some senior friends for posts below that. I will take appropriate decision within a couple of days after taking opinion of representative friends from across the country taking all that into consideration," Bhattarai told Setopati in a video interview on Tuesday.
"There is strong possibility of me contesting for secretary. I have served for one term as secretary. I can become secretary for one more term as per the statute. Some of the friends have suggested that I should make necessary preparation to go above that in the next general convention (11th)."
He stressed that there should be unity in the party and also resolve the crisis facing the party. "I, therefore, don't give much importance to which person should remain in what position. It is insignificant now. But it is natural that people should get respectable post."
He pointed that others are free to contest for the post of chair but stressed that current Chairman KP Sharma Oli is seen as chairman for one more term as he is the senior most among contemporary leaders in the party.
"It does not necessarily mean that someone should challenge for chair. It will be determined by time, situation, necessity, personality and all the things. Nobody has announced yet whether KP Oli should be the party chairman or not. He has also not done that," he stated. "The understanding outside is that KP Oli will come again. KP Oli is the senior most leader among the leaders in UML. One can estimate that his chance is greater in that respect."
He said that there is chance of leadership being elected through consensus. "There is some difference between the present situation and past. There was competition between ideological groups in the past. Announcements were made in advance about who the candidates were. There is no such factionalism in the party now."
He pointed that the 10 standing committee members, who were in the then Khanal-Nepal faction of UML but did not join the new party, came together due to a special situation. "We created the situation for party unity. This situation arose to stop party split or to limit the impact if there is split. This could not stop party split but has lessened the impact of split. It is not that one should always remain together, not that there will be no change."