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Alliance for Social Dialogue

:: Nepal in Transition Constitution Making Process Analytical Articles
Analytical Articles
Personal Experiences of CA Members
Written by Dhruba Simkhada   

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The Constituent Assembly of Nepal is very heterogeneous, representing different ethnicities, religious, communities, class, regions, and gender. It can be called a ‘rainbow assembly’. The CA members bring different faces, languages, and dresses to the Assembly meetings. These members from different backgrounds were elected with the aim of drafting a constitution through the Constituent Assembly election on April 10, 2008 through a mixture of direct election and proportional representation, all with the aim of drafting the constitution for new democratic republic of Nepal. There were 601 members in the first sitting of the Constituent Assembly on May 28, 2008. This number kept changing afterwards, and this number is now 594. The initial joy, ambition, energy, and revolutionary fervour with which they had first entered the Constituent Assembly building in Naya Baneshwor soon died down. Their zeal for constitution-drafting had subsided so much that during the three-year duration and 109th meeting of the Assembly, they had become subjects of ridicule and derision.

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High-level Taskforce: Fails to find Consensus Major Issues
Written by Dhruba Simkhada   

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The High-level Taskforce was unable to find consensus only in minor issues but not in issues that have stalled the constitution-drafting process. The UCPN (M) chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal-led Taskforce held 27 meetings and was able to garner consensus in some minor issues but it disappeared from the scene without fulfilling its responsibility despite two extensions.

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Lost Nine Months
Written by Dhruba Simkhada   

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There were only five sittings of the Constituent Assembly in nine months. Besides discussion on drafting the constitution, the meetings could not achieve anything else. Only three months remain of the extended deadline. However, the constitution-drafting exercise remains where it was a year ago. In the words of Nilambar Acharya, the chairperson of the Constitutional Committee, responsible for preparing the draft of the constitution, ‘In terms of drafting the constitution, we are in the same position where we were one year ago.’

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President’s Interest and Concern for Constitution-drafting
Written by Dhruba Simkhada   

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There are clear indications in the Nepali political circles that the transition will be a protracted one. There is a competition among political players to move ahead by restricting others. Interparty and intra-party disputes are at an extreme. The people are losing their trust on the leaders as they get involved in mutual distrust, suspicion, and display conflicting characters. There is lack of mutually acceptable leadership who can end the transition. The leaders have to take the responsibility for this delicate phase in peace and constitution-drafting process. It is no surprise that people have expectation from the prime minister Jhala Nath Khanal and other leaders. There is a need for dialogue between leaders to bring the peace and constitution-drafting process on the right ‘track’.

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Congress Awareness Campaign for Peace and Constitution
Written by Bhuwan KC   

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The Constituent Assembly (CA) could not promulgate the constitution by the scheduled date of May 28, 2010. Then the parties extended the deadline by another year. Even nine months after extension of the deadline, the constitution-drafting process could not move ahead smoothly. There were doubts raised not only at the extension resulting from interparty conflict and mistrust but also on drafting of the constitution itself.

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