Politicians, editorials, public urge PM Oli to resign pronto; ‘Oli ready to face Parliament’

As Nepali politicians, general public, and the media are unanimously demanding Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to resign on moral grounds, Press Advisor Surya Thapa said the prime minister does not intend to immediately step down.

While major newspapers have published today’s editorials urging Oli to resign, Nepal Communist Party co-chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Nepali Congress senior leader Shekhar Koirala, Janta Samjbadi Party Nepal’s Baburam Bhattarai on Tuesday had asked Prime Minister Oli to step down immediately.

Political leaders have said that Oli had lost moral ground to stay in the post of prime minister any further following the apex court’s verdict.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered the reinstatement of parliament, dealing a blow to Prime Minister Oli two months after he dissolved the house and called for an early election amid squabbling within the ruling Communist party.

The nation has been in political turmoil since December when Oli, who turned 70 on Tuesday, made a sudden decision to call elections 18 months ahead of schedule amid the coronavirus pandemic that has hit the tourism-dependent economy hard.

Judges heard more than a dozen petitions challenging Oli’s move as unconstitutional and seeking the reinstatement of the house, which still had two years to run when it was dissolved.

Oli had defended his move, saying his rivals in the Nepal Communist Party had not cooperated with the government in the appointment of officials to panels such as the national human rights and anti-corruption commissions, and in other policy decisions.

His lawyers had defended his move arguing in court that the prime minister had the same powers that were bestowed to kings and Rana rulers.

But judges rejected this and ordered that parliament be convened within 13 days.

“The verdict passed by the Supreme Court is controversial, but must be followed and implemented. It is certain that negative consequences of the verdict will be seen in the future,” Oli’s Press Advisor Thapa wrote in his official facebook page yesterday.

“The verdict will not bring any resolution to the political problems. This will instead give rise to instability. Power politics will increase further.”

Thapa further wrote that Prime Minister Oli will implement the court’s decision only after facing the parliament. “Prime Minister will implement the verdict only after facing the House of Representatives. He will not immediately step down,” he added.