A meeting of Council of Ministers on Monday recommended Vice-chair of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP), Bamdev Gautam, for the 59-member National Assembly (NA).
Gautam, who had expressed his desire to become a member of the Upper House months ago, was ignored by the Council of Ministers earlier due to an intra-party conflict within NCP.
Though Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli wanted to recommend former finance minister Yubaraj Khatiwada to NA, PM Oli agreed on sending Gautam to the Upper House as per the decision by the party’s Standing Committee.
Oli’s decision to recommend Gautam to NA comes after a recent six-point proposal floated by Gautam stating that the PM should not be removed from premiership before the tenure of the House of Representatives ends.
Gautam also proposed that Oli should be allowed to hold the post of party co-chair until NCP’s next General Convention, helping the Prime Minister to neutralise his opponents who had asked him to step down either as PM or party co-chair.
The main resolution presented by the six-member task force, formed by NCP to resolve intra-party rift and quell demands for Oli’s resignation, was on the lines of Gautam’s proposal.
Gautam had lost to Sanjay Kumar Gautam of Nepali Congress in the last general election from his home constituency of Bardiya-1.
Meanwhile, civil society members and some other politicians have criticised the ruling party for recommending Gautam to NA saying NCP’s decision was against the wishes of the electorate, since Gautam had lost in the election.
The recommendation needs to be approved by President Bidhya Devi Bhandari for Gautam to be formally inducted as a member of the Upper House of the Parliament.