PM Deuba Prioritises Local Elections Instead Of Ministerial Appointments

Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba is according priority to the second round of Local Elections scheduled for June 28. At the party’s central executive committee meeting on Thursday, PM Deuba urged committee members to return to their respective districts and prepare for the elections. Less than three weeks remain for scheduled polls in Provinces 1, 2, 5 and 7.

Deuba, who was elected with the support of CPN (Maoist Centre) and Madhesi parties on May 6, has formed a seven-member Cabinet made up of old faces. He has stated, however, the remaining ministerial posts will be filled only after the second round of Local Elections.

The ruling coalition of NC and CPN (Maoist Centre) have been allotted three ministerial portfolios while Nepal Lokatantrik Forum has been given one. NC’s Gopal Man Shrestha, Gyanendra Bahadur Karki, and Farmullah Mansoor have been given the Education, Finance, and Labour ministries respectively.

CPN (Maoist Centre) lawmakers, Krishna Bahadur Mahara, Janardan Sharma, and Prabhu Shah are also Cabinet members. Mahara now holds the portfolio of Deputy Prime Minister as well.

Bijay Kumar Gachchhedar, Chairperson of Nepal Lokatantrik Forum (NLF), has been given the portfolio of Deputy Prime Minister and is also Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development.

Gachchhedar and Mahara have both been Ministers six times each. Gachchheddar has been Deputy PM five times (timeline below), while this is Mahara’s third time (timeline below).

Of the nine governments formed within 10 years of the Jana Andolan II (People’s Movement), Gachhedar and Mahara have always been given major Cabinet portfolios.

The coalition allows NC to have 11 ministerial berths while the CPN (Maoist Centre) holds nine posts. There are 30 ministerial posts in total, but State Ministers and Ministers without portfolios can be appointed if history is anything to go by. In 2004, PM Deuba had a jumbo Cabinet with 48 Ministers.

NC and CPN (Maoist Centre) have included one Madhesi member each in the Cabinet. As yet, not a single woman has been picked to the Cabinet.

PM Deuba is the President of Nepali Congress (NC), the country’s oldest party that also has the highest number of parliament seats. During the Local Elections, the party placed second, after the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist and Leninist).

PM  Deuba’s Cabinet

Gopal Man Shrestha, NC

Gopal Man Shrestha

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Education

 

Gyanendra Bahadur Karki, NC

Gyanendra Bahadur Karki

Minister for Finance

Farmullah Mansoor

Farmullah Mansoor

Minister for Labour and Employment

Krishna Bahadur Mahara, CPN (Maoist Centre)

Mahara

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs

Janardan Sharma, CPN (Maoist Centre)

Janardan Sharma

Minister for Home Affairs

Prabhu Shah, CPN (Maoist Centre)

Prabhu Shah

Minister without Portfolio

Bijay Kumar Gachchhedar, NLF

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development

Cabinet Members will be updated as they are appointed.

Gachchhedar’s Ministerial Years

1991

Minister for Communication

1995

Minister for Infrastructure and Transportation

1998

Minister for Infrastructure and Transportation

1999

Minister for Tourism and Civil Aviation

2000

Minister for Water Resources

2001

Minister for Water Resources

2008

Minister for Infrastructure and Transportation

2009

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transportation

2011

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs

2015

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transportation

2017

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development

Mahara’s Ministerial Years

2008

Minister for Communication

2011

Minister for Communication

2013

Minister for Home Affairs

2014

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance

2016

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs