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Nepal's parliament elects new prime minister after seven months


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Nepal's parliament elects new prime minister after seven months

2011-02-04 01:15:31 GMT+7 (ICT)

KATHMANDU (BNO NEWS) -- Nepal's parliament on Thursday elected a new prime minister, ending seven months of political gridlock, the Himalayan Times reported.

Jhalanath Khanal, chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal, received 368 votes, while rival Nepali Congress' Paudel secured 122 votes in the current 598-seat parliament. Gachhadar from the Madhesi People's Rights Forum got 67 votes. 

Khanal's road to premiership was cleared after the candidate of the UCPN-Maoist, the largest party in parliament, pulled out of the race, to support Khanal in the PM vote.

"It's a public disgrace for all leaders and political parties not to be able to form an effective government for so long," Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the candidate of the UCPN-Maoist, said.

"There is currently a widespread frustration and fury in the public," he said adding that it struck his mind that this might allow an opportunity for a dictator or regressive force to raise its ugly head.

Nepal had been without a proper government since prime minister Madhav Kumar Nepal resigned on June 30 to clear the way for a consensus government. After 16 rounds of voting, no candidate had been able to obtain the necessary votes.

With only about three months remaining for promulgation of a new constitution, the election of a new PM, though late, has been seen as a positive move in the hope that the parties would now get more time to concentrate on the statute drafting task.


-- © BNO News All rights reserved 2011-02-04

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