Nepal prime min­is­ter quits

The Myanmar Times - - World -

NEPAL’S K P Sharma Oli re­signed as prime min­is­ter on July 24, min­utes be­fore fac­ing a no-con­fi­dence mo­tion in par­lia­ment he was cer­tain to lose, plung­ing the im­pov­er­ished, quake-hit na­tion into fresh tur­moil.

Mr Oli was forced to quit af­ter for­mer Maoist rebels de­serted his frac­tious rul­ing coali­tion, ac­cus­ing him of reneg­ing on past deals and fol­low­ing deadly un­rest over a di­vi­sive new con­sti­tu­tion.

“I have de­cided to open the road to elect a new prime min­is­ter in this par­lia­ment and pre­sented my res­ig­na­tion to the pres­i­dent,” Mr Oli, who had only been in power for nine months, told law­mak­ers ahead of the no-con­fi­dence vote.

The pres­i­dent is now ex­pected to ask po­lit­i­cal par­ties to try to form a new power-shar­ing govern­ment and nom­i­nate a can­di­date for prime min­is­ter.

Maoist chief Pushpa Ka­mal Da­hal could be­come the new prime min­is­ter af­ter the for­mer rebels and main op­po­si­tion Nepali Con­gress party said be­fore the vote that they would try to form a new ad­min­is­tra­tion if Mr Oli lost.

The cur­rent cabi­net would con­tinue un­til a new govern­ment was formed, a process ex­pected to take at least a week.

Mr Da­hal, the first prime min­is­ter af­ter the Maoist in­sur­gency ended in 2006, pulled his party from Mr Oli’s coali­tion two weeks ago, leav­ing it with­out a ma­jor­ity.

The em­bat­tled prime min­is­ter ac­cused the Maoists of un­der­min­ing his govern­ment, which he said was work­ing to re­build the coun­try af­ter a dev­as­tat­ing earth­quake last year.

“I am con­cerned that the steps taken were driven by self­ish­ness and re­venge [and they] will cause a longterm neg­a­tive im­pact and push the coun­try to in­sta­bil­ity,” he said.

Mr Oli’s res­ig­na­tion is the lat­est cri­sis to hit Nepal which has suf­fered from years of po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity and strug­gled to get back on its feet since last April’s quake, which claimed al­most 9000 lives.

Photo: AFP

Nepal’s caretaker Prime Min­is­ter K P Oli Sharma (right) shakes hands with Maoist leader Pushpa Ka­mal Da­hal in Kath­mandu on July 24.

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