Minutes before the vote on no-confidence, Lumbini CM Shankar Pokhrel resigns

File: Lumbini Chief Minister Shankar Pokhrel

Butwal, August 11

Lumbini Chief Ministre Shankar Pokhrel has resigned about half an hour before the Provincial Assembly would begin a vote on the no-confidence motion against him.

Pokhrel’s CPN-UML party chief whip Bhumishwar Dhakal says Pokhrel is currently at Governor Amik Sherchan’s office to submit resignation.

The resignation is expected to open doors to the opposition alliance to form the new government.

CPN-Maoist Centre’s Kul Prasad KC is likely to be appointed the next chief minister.

Chief Minister Shankar Pokhrel had already lost majority support in the assembly. The opposition parties have already submitted the signatures of 41 lawmakers of the 80-member assembly, stating they can garner the majority support to form the new government.

Earlier on May 2, Pokhrel was reappointed as the chief minister, hours after he resigned from the position, as he had claimed his party, CPN-UML, had the support of 41 lawmakers in the province. However, two lawmakers had resigned from the positions expressing dissatisfaction with Pokhrel whereas one defected to the CPN-Maoist Centre.

It means Pokhrel has the support of only 38 lawmakers currently.

Consequently, the opposition parties had filed a no-confidence motion against him on May 9, but the then governor Dharma Nath Yadav, who was close to the UML, had rejected the call, arguing the motion cannot be filed in the first two years of the appointment.

Apparently, to pave the way for the opposition parties to topple the government, the federal government consisting of the NC, Maoist Centre and Janata Samajbadi Party had removed Yadav from the position to be replaced with Amik Sherchan, a former Maoist leader.

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