Laxmi Capital News
Upper house election today

Two months aftercompletion of the parliamentary and provincial assembly election, the ElectionCommission (EC) is conducting the National Assembly (NA) poll onWednesday. 

On the eve of theNA poll, the election body said that the stage is all set for the upper houseelection. “All preparations for the election have been completed. Thegovernment has arranged foolproof security, so we urge all voters to exercisetheir rights without any fear,” Chief Election Commissioner Ayodhee PrasadYadav told reporters at the EC headquarters while briefing them about the pollpreparations on Tuesday. 

Constitutionally,there will be a 59-member upper house. Out of the total 59 members of the upperhouse, the election will elect 56 members while the government itself willnominate the remaining three members. 

All eight membersfrom Province 2 and 16 from other provinces have already been electedunopposed. Since some members of the upper house have already been electedunopposed, election will take place in six places where the government hasestablished high courts. As per the poll schedule, the upper house electionwill be held in Morang, Hetauda, Pokhara, Dang, Surkhet and Dipayal, accordingto election officers. 

The electionslated for Wednesday will elect the remaining 32 members. According to thedetails provided by the provincial election officers, 52 candidates from 13parties are contesting for the remaining 32 seats of the upper house.

As per theconstitution, each province elects eight members whereas the governmentnominates three National Assembly members. Chiefs and deputy chiefs of 753local units and members of the provincial assembly will elect the upper housethrough single transferable voting system.  

“Since Province 2has already elected upper house members unopposed, altogether 1677 voters willelect the remaining members,” said election chief Yadav. 

Citing ambiguousconstitutional provisions regarding formation of the new government, theelection body has refused to allocate PR seats obtained by the politicalparties for the central parliament. This has delayed power handover to the pollwining parties. 

The election bodyhas been facing criticism from all quarters for delaying releasing the pollresults. 

Concerned over thecriticism, the election body has deployed separate teams from the central levelto assist poll officers in releasing timely results. Also, it plans to handoverpoll results to the president immediately after the vote counting for the upperhouse is over and clear the way for formation of new government. 

“The EC iscommitted to handover the results of all polls to the president within February19,” said CEC Yadav. 

After thesubmission of poll results, the party commanding majority will urge thepresident to let them form the new government.  Despite releasing pollresults under the first-past-the-post electoral system, the EC has notallocated parliamentary PR seats so far.

Source: MyRepublica, 7th February 2018

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