Nepali Congress (NC) has again amended the schedule of general convention with leaders failing to decide about candidates for provincial and central committees.
Candidacy for provincial convention should have been filed on Wednesday but NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba, Senior Leader Ram Chandra Paudel and former general secretary Krishna Prasad Sitaula have amended schedule for the convention after holding a discussion on Monday pointing that there are many aspirants for provincial chiefs, and district convention has not been held in some districts.
Candidacy should have been filed on December 1, provincial convention inaugurated on December 2, and voting held on December 3 as per the previous schedule . Candidacy will now be filed only on December 3 and voting held the next day.
The postponement of schedule in provincial convention has also affected that for the general convention.
Candidacy was to be filed on December 7 for the general convention as per the previous schedule but the voter list for the general convention will be published only on December 10 and nominations can be filed only on December 11 as per the amended schedule.
The party earlier had scheduled to inaugurate the general convention on December 10 and hold voting the next day with filing of nominations scheduled for December 7. But voting will now be held only on December 13.
The previous schedule endorsed by the central committee has been amended by the the three leaders on Monday after discussion.
The leaders of the three factions have not been able to decide about candidacy at both the provincial and central level. Deuba wants to contest for another term as party chief while Vice-president Bimalendra Nidhi from the faction is also planning to contest for president along with a panel of candidates for office-bearers.
With two aspirants for top post from the same faction, Deuba and Nidhi have yet to finalize the candidates for office-bearers.
Paudel, who had lost to Deuba in the last general convention, wants to again challenge Deuba for the top post while General Secretary Shashank Koirala, former general secretary Prakash Man Singh and central member Shekhar Koirala from his faction have also staked claim for the top post.
Paudel has assured that only one candidate will contest for the top post from his faction but the four aspirants have yet to decide who that consensus candidate will be. A few have already announced candidacy for office-bearers but the panel of office-bearers from the faction can only be agreed once the leaders take a decision on candidate for president.
Similarly Sitauala, who had contested for president in the last general convention with Deuba and Paudel but had supported Deuba in the second round of voting, also plans to again contest for the top post.
The Deuba and the Paudel factions are braced for close fight even in the provincial convention with the Sitaula faction, which is weaker than the other factions, set to ally with the Deuba faction, according to multiple NC leaders.
The leaders have struggled to even announce candidates for provincial chiefs from their respective factions due to multiple aspirants in their factions.