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Nepal heading for local body elections

Posted on Mar 09 2014 | IANS

Kathmandu, March 9 : Nepal is preparing to hold local body elections after a 16-year hiatus, a government minister said Sunday.

The elections for the leadership of village development committees (VDCs) and municipalities should have been held every five years. But due to political instability, there has not been any such election since 1998.

The Constituent Assembly elections were successfully conducted in November last year. In their election manifestos, all the political parties had committed to hold such elections within six months from the formation of the new government.

"The government is preparing to fix the date for the local elections to bring the democratic process on track," Xinhua quoted Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Urban Development Prakash Man Singh as saying at a public programme. Singh is the general secretary of the ruling Nepali Congress party.

The Election Commission is also making technical preparations for holding the local elections.

The elections will have to take place by June, otherwise the rains will begin and it will not be possible to hold the elections till November.

Coalition partner Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist-Leninist (CPN-UML) is also pressing the government to fix the date for the local elections without any delay.

The third largest party, Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPN-M), which is busy rebuilding its party organisations, has not yet made any official statement to show its stance on the local polls.

Other fringe parties represented in the Himalayan nation's Constituent Assembly are also in favour of local elections to be held soon.

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