Prez assures timely removal of constitutional and legal hurdles for polls
KATHMANDU, Dec 18: President Ram Baran Yadav on Monday assured the Election Commission (EC) that constitutional and legal hurdles will be removed as soon as possible to conduct the new elections for Constituent Assembly (CA) by mid May.
The head of state directed Chief Election Commissioner Dolakh Bahadur Gurung and Commissioner Ayodhi Prasad Yadav to keep up their preparations for the polls during a meeting at his office at Sital Niwas.
"The political parties have been trying to forge consensus to resolve the issues and you will get necessary laws and act on time [to hold elections]," Commissioner Yadav quoted the president as saying in the meeting.
According to Commissioner Yadav, the president enquired about the status of preparation being made by the constitutional body and further time and legal requirements needed for preparation to conduct the polls.
In response, Chief Election commissioner Gurung and Commissioner Yadav reiterated that constitutional and legal hurdles should be removed and vacant positions at the constitutional body must be filled.
"We also said that the government should declare a specific date to hold elections as it has been only declared that polls would be held by mid May," Commissioner Yadav told Republica.
The EC leadership also briefed the president about the preparations being made in order to hold CA polls by mid May.
They told the president that the EC has already expedited a process to get Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) from India and officials were being trained for the polls. They also informed the president about the status of voters´ registration and its efforts to update the list to include those who are missing.
The present caretaker government in November had announced that it would conduct CA election by mid April to mid May.
Three posts for election commissioner are vacant at the EC while Chief Election commissioner Gurung and Commissioner Yadav will retire on January 11, 2013. Earlier, the constitutional body had made it clear that it was not able to hold CA elections on November 22 citing lack of time for necessary preparations in the absence of clear election related laws.
Bhattarai-led government on May 27 had announced fresh CA election on November 22 following the dissolution of the CA.