With the successful conclusion of the first phase local polls, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has been consulting leaders of his party on handing over government leadership to Nepali Congress (NC) President Sher Bahadur Deuba immediately after presentation of the budget, said senior leaders of the CPN (Maoist Center).
According to the Maoist leaders, Dahal is planning to resign on Monday or Tuesday, paving the way for the election of a new government led by NC President Deuba.
The government has decided to commence the budget session of parliament from Monday. According to Maoist Center leaders, Dahal plans to address parliament the same day and also announce his resignation.
Due to constitutional procedures, it is likely to take over a week to elect the new government after Dahal’s resignation. According to Article 298 of the new constitution, the president must allocate a week for the political parties to try to form a new government through all-party consensus.
But a consensus government is unlikely as the main opposition party leaders have said they will contest Deuba’s candidacy. If the political parties fail to agree on any single candidate, the new prime minister will be elected through a majority process.
When the NC supported Maoist Chairman Dahal for prime minister in August last year, NC and Maoist Center had agreed on the subsequent handover of government leadership.
According to their political understanding, Deuba will lead the next government until January 2018, which is the constitutional deadline for holding parliamentary elections.