Ousted fringe parties have footing in state assemblies

December 18, 2017

The Kathmandu Post, 18 Dec 2017 

Some smaller parties that failed to secure seats in the House of Representatives under the Proportional Representation category will have some respite as they will get some seats in the provincial assemblies, thanks to a lower threshold for representation in the state legislatures.

The Act on Elections to Provincial Assemblies has set 1.5 percent votes as the threshold for election in the provincial assemblies under the PR category. The hurdle is 3 percent in case of the House of Representatives where only five forces will have recognition as national parties.

Based on the votes secured by the parties, the CPN-UML, the Nepali Congress, the CPN (Maoist Centre), the Rastriya Janata Party Nepal and the Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum, Nepal will get seats in the House.

Parties including the Rastriya Prajatantra Party, its splinter group RPP (Prajatantrik), Rastriya Janamorcha, Nepal Majdoor Kisan Party, Bibeksheel Sajha Party, the Sanghiya Loktantrik Rastriya Manch and the Nepal Sanghiya Samajbadi Party will have some seats in the provincial assemblies.

With the Election Commission (EC) concluding counting of the PR votes on Sunday, the smaller parties crossing the threshold will get seats in one or more provincial assemblies.

For example, the RPP will get some seats in Province 1 assembly while the Sanghiya Loktantrik Rastriya Manch will also have representation as both have got more than 1.5 percent votes.

In Province 2, the Nepal Sanghiya Samajbadi Party, with “bus” as its electoral symbol, will have representation in the provincial assembly. The party secured 2.13 percent votes in the province.

In Province 3 assembly, Bibeksheel Sajha, RPP, RPP (P) and NMKP will have representatives. Among the fringe parties, Bibeksheel Sajha got the highest number of votes in Province 3.

As far as representation in Province 4 is concerned, Naya Shakti Party Nepal, Rastriya Janamorcha, Bibeksheel Sajha and RPP will have representation.

The Rastriya Janamorcha will be recognised as a party in Province 5 from among the forces that failed to secure a PR seat at the Centre.

The RPP and the NMKP will have representation in Province 6 assembly. RPP will be represented in Province 7 assembly.

The EC will now have to calculate the number of seats each party will get and inform them about it. “We will seek candidates to be elected from the parties based on the proportion of the communities for representation as defined in the directives on Provincial Assembly Elections,” said EC Spokesperson Navaraj Dhakal.