Kathmandu, February 21
The race is getting narrower as the Nepal presidential election date is getting closer. While parties continue efforts to turn the tables on their favours, as of Monday evening, it seems Ram Chandra Paudel and Madhav Kumar Nepal will be the final contestants for the country’s top position.
Ram Chandra Paudel of the Nepali Congress was an ongoing story for the last few weeks. But, on Monday, leaders of different political parties revealed that CPN-UML chairman KP Sharma Oli is trying to field his former comrade and CPN-Unified Socialist leader Madhav Kumar Nepal for the presidential election.
This is not an easy choice for Oli as his ties with Nepal have reached the lowest for the past two years. But, he is compromising so as to block the Nepali Congress candidate from winning the election, say negotiators.
Of late, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s CPN-Maoist Centre has been hinting that it would not support the UML candidate for the Nepal presidential election as it is pressing for “national consensus.” There are also reports that he has already assured the Nepali Congress of its support if the party can bring every other party–but the UML–on board.
It means Oli is convinced that the UML will not be able to win the presidential race. Now, he has hope that if he fields former PM Madhav Kumar Nepal on his behalf, it will put pressure on the Maoist Centre–and even the Congress–to rethink.
As of now, both the Congress and Nepal’s Unified Socialist are in the same position; they have given the confidence vote to PM Dahal but claim to be the opposition parties.