Prime Minister (PM) Pushpa Kamal Dahal has said that CPN (Maoist Center) will stake claim for the post of National Assembly chair.
Answering questions raised by the party’s lawmakers during the Maoist parliamentary party meeting on Tuesday, Maoist Chairman Dahal has said that the party will stake claim for National Assembly chair in capacity of the largest party in the Upper House, according to lawmaker Madhav Sapkota.
“The majority of lawmakers speaking in the meeting opined that Maoist Center should not give away the post of National Assembly chair. PM has assured that he would raise the issue in the meeting of ruling coalition,” Sapkota has stated.
The Maoist lawmakers have also accused Nepali Congress (NC) of betrayal in the National Assembly election in Koshi.
Election for National Assembly chair is likely to be held on March 12.
The term of 20 National Assembly members including current National Assembly Chairman Ganesh Prasad Timalsina will end on March 4. The term of Bimala Rai Paudel, who was nominated by the then president on recommendation of the then KP Sharma Oli government, is also set to expire on March 4.
Election for the 19 seats to be vacant has already been held on January 25. The coalition has already decided to replace Bimala Rai Paudel with Rastriya Janamorcha Vice-chair Durga Paudel.
CPN (Maoist Center) has become the single largest party in the National Assembly after five of its six candidates got elected on that day. Maoist Center, which currently has 15 seats in the National Assembly, will now have 17 lawmakers in the Upper House once the term of newly elected members starts in March.
UML, that currently has 17 seats, has dropped to third from first with 10 seats despite it winning one seat on Thursday due to cross-voting in the ruling coalition.
Nepali Congress (NC), that currently has 10 seats, has become the second largest party in the National Assembly with 16.
CPN (Unified Socialist) will have eight seats while Janata Samajwadi Party will have three. Loktantrik Samajwadi Party and Rastriya Janamorcha have one each.
Former NC general secretary Krishna Prasad Sitaula who got elected from Koshi, is aspiring to become National Assembly chair. NC leader Shekhar Koirala and General Secretary Bishwa Prakash Sharma have already publicly stated that Sitaula was made candidate to get him elected National Assembly chair.
But Maoist Center, whose candidate in Koshi Champa Devi Karki lost due to cross-voting in the ruling coalition, has been demanding the post pointing that it lost one seat in Koshi, and will not have any representative in the Constitutional Council if Prime Minister (PM) Pushpa Kamal Dahal were to make way for another coalition leader as per the agreement in the coalition to take turns as PM.
The coalition leaders have yet to decide about the post of National Assembly chair.