Nepal Government’s Assertive Response to UN Special Rapporteur
In a four page document with nine detailed bullet points and one extensive footnote on Nepal’s Constitution, the Government of Nepal has clarified to the UN human rights body that the impeachment motion against Chief Justice Sushila Karki, was constitutional and not an attack on an independent judiciary.
On May 5, UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, Diego García-Sayán, had written a letter addressed to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Parliament and Minister for Foreign Affairs raising concerns over the impeachment, delay in the transitional justice system, and threat to the judges from political parties. He had warned that he would take the matter to the UN Security Council if Nepal did not take necessary steps to withdraw the impeachment.
Responding to the concerns raised by García-Sayán, the government has strongly asserted the information supplied to him is inaccurate and falsified to influence a legitimate constitutional process.
“It was an entirely normal constitutional process, which has been wrongly vilified by certain quarters of society for some ulterior motives,” reads the response.
It is incomprehensible how the Special Rapporteur relied on the falsified information.
“The government notes with serious exception the unsubstantiated allegation of “threats to the judges from political leaders,” reads the letter. “This is unfounded and does not align with reality. This also reflects that the allegation has been framed on the basis of inaccurate information.”
Karki resumed office on May 5, the very day when the UN rights body wrote to the Nepal government after the Supreme Court issued an interim order directing the Parliament to put the motion on hold. The motion is yet to be tabled in the Parliament for discussion. The delay appears to be intentional. Karki is scheduled to retire on June 7, after which the motion becomes irrelevant.
Here is the letter the Nepal Government wrote: