KATHMANDU, Nov 26: The agitating political parties have called off their protest programs scheduled for November 30 and December 1 in view of the changed political context, mainly following the president´s call for formation of a consensus government.
"All the protest programs scheduled for November 30 and December 1 have been postponed so as to focus our efforts on negotiations," said a joint statement issued by Nepali Congress President Sushil Koirala, CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal and chiefs of other agitating political parties, after a 16-party meeting held at UML´s head office in Balkhu on Sunday.
The agitating parties earlier this month had announced month-long protests aiming to unseating the present government. They, however, shifted their focus to negotiations as the president on Friday called on the political forces to come up with a consensus prime ministerial candidate by Thursday.
Leaders from opposition parties at UML office, Balkhu. (Photo: Bijay Rai)
The opposition parties had earlier requested President Ram Baran Yadav in writing to formally call for the formation of a new consensus government.
Reiterating that the president´s call was constitutional, positive and welcome, the opposition parties´ meeting also termed the ruling parties´ criticism against the head of state as “undemocratic” and “intended to prolong stay in power”.
"We therefore call upon the prime minister, the UCPN (Maoist), Madhes-based parties and other ruling as well as opposition parties to take the president´s move positively and move toward forming a consensus government," read the statement.
The 16-party meeting, however, didn´t dwell on the issues of nominating a prime ministerial candidate and power sharing even as the opposition alliance stakes claims to leadership of the new government.
"Today [Sunday], the meeting didn´t take up the issue of prime ministerial candidate and other matters relating to government formation," Chitra Bahadur KC, chairman of Rastriya Janamorcha, told Republica.