Editorial – –
It is encouraging to see the CPN UML’s 10th Chitawan National Convention pursue the path of electoral process for picking up the party’s top leadership and its body for the next five years. The consensus-way, the party’s first preference to choose fresh leadership, could not succeed despite various efforts at myriad levels. The switch-over to election for final decision on the central leadership of what is the largest parliamentary party at the moment could be dubbed wise. The fact that cadres and leaders of the leftist party participating in the political conclave felt no problem in fast-substituting consensus with electoral mode indicates political maturity and faith of the communist party in values of democracy and multi-party-democracy. The same should be lauded for such effort contributes to sustainability of internal democracy in political parties, which, unfortunately, is rare in Nepali politics. Former Prime Minister K. P. Oli, who has also been chairing CPN UML for the past five years, stood first for consensus to preserve the leftist unity within the party. He did so to make the party more accommodative and united keeping in view the cadres and leaders who joined it leaving other leftist or other parties or remained in it despite a section quitting the party to form another party – CPN Unified Socialist – under the leadership of another leftist leader Madhav Nepal. Oli’s effort could not yield result. So he was compelled to accept the process of election at the final moment. Those who think elections divide the party and the cadres among camps or factions are actually in illusion. Electoral process actually make democratic process functional and decisive; it ensures the decision making, dynamics and good health in the political system. The only condition is that elections should be held freely, fairly and those who participate in it should openly accept victory or tolerate defeat. Those who get defeated in polls should think that they would come back in future and those who win should have patience for listening to the defeated and respect them properly as a participant in a healthy competition. The CPN UML is no stranger to electoral process inside the party and outside it in the political sphere of the country. It has several years of experience of electoral process inside the party and outside it. It has experiences of victory and defeats in elections. The same would guide the party in future for long. As and when efforts fail to settle disputes through consensus, it is wise to go the way of elections.