Sushil Koirala elected Nepal’s new PM

Septuagenarian Sushil Koirala was elected new Prime Minister of Nepal on February 2, 2014.

Koirala, the president of Nepali Congress and its parliamentary party leader Sushil Koirala was elected to the new prime minister by mustering 73 per cent votes in the 601-member parliament cum Constituent Assembly.

Nepali Congress is the largest party in the new parliament of Nepal. Koirala, 75, is a bachelor and became the sixth Prime Minister of Republic of Nepal. Nepal became republic in 2008 by abolishing 240-year monarchical system.

Koirala, who lost the first Constituent Assembly election in 2008 was elected in the new CA from two constituencies in the election held on November 19, 2013.

Nicknamed as ‘Mr Clean’ in Nepali politics, Koirala has never before held any public post. He was prevented from becoming the prime minister by the pro-Indian faction of the UCPN-Maoist last year.

He became PM in the support of the second largest party in the parliament–the CPN-UML.

The oldest member of the Parliament Surya Bahadur Thapa, who was chairing the House meeting, declared Koirala as the new PM following the voting.

Koirala, who was the sole candidate for the prime ministerial race, secured 405 votes with 148 lawmakers casing their ballot against him.

Currently, the 601-seat parliament has only 571 members as 26 lawmakers have yet to be nominated by the Council of Ministers. Altogether 553 lawmakers cast their votes on Monday’s voting.

On Sunday, Koirala had filed his candidacy for the prime minister post following a seven-point deal on power-sharing issue between the two largest parties – the NC and UML.

NC vice-president Ram Chandra Poudel had proposed Koirala as candidate for prime minister while UML parliamentary party leader KP Sharma Oli had seconded the proposal.

Speaking at the parliament meeting before the voting, NC vice-president Poudel expressed his confidence that the country would get a new constitution under Koirala’s premiership.

Praising Koirala as a saint and selfless leader who has struggled hard for the establishment of democracy in the country, Poudel also hoped that the government under Koirala would be successful in offering good governance to the people.

Similarly, UML leader Oli argued that his party supported to form a new government under Koirala in order to bring peace and democracy on track.

Talking to media persons after being elected as the prime minister, Koirala said that he would form the government by taking all the political parties into confidence.

Koirala also said that he would concentrate all his efforts to promulgate the new constitution within a one year.

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