May 24, 2022, Tuesday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Issues before local polls

The Nepal Weekly
April 12, 2022

By TNW correspondent

A number of pressing issues are rendering the May 13 local polls as highly important from the view point of national politics. Leading among them are those related to development, disaster management, public education, public health, public transport, solid waste management, environment protection, space for women in politics, decisions, planning and minimizing corruption and irregularities.

Although central leaders of political parties have not yet formulated their specific strategy for them, local leaders are being questioned about their scheme to address the above issues by local people. As they do their door-to-door-publicity for polls they come across the issues being continuously raised by people.

Those who aspire after candidature in local polls appear a bit confused about explaining their parties’ stand on them. Their parties have not yet given them clearance to propose schemes for undertaking programmes designed to address the issues mentioned above.

Some prospective candidates carrying banners of different political parties in Kathmandu, Janakpurdham, Birgunj, Taplejung, Bhairahawa, Dhangadhi and Baitadi expressed their dilemma in answering public queries regarding the issues. All the issues, although simple in words, carry heavyweight consequences. They make a difference in rendering local governance a success or a failure.

A few prospective candidates also face challenges to defend the performance of those who manned the first cycle of federalism in the country. Although there is a mixed picture of good performance and bad performance at local levels in the first five years, a number of people are seeking to get words from prospective candidates about their performance in the next five years.

How do you make the second cycle of federal practice in the country different? What are your schemes to earn public trust? What will be your specific contribution to the development and effectiveness of local government in the next period -2022-2027? Such questions are troubling prospective candidates these days, said a media analyst.

Although the shape of candidature at local level has not yet been clear, the incumbent ones are encountering troubles in defending their performance, said a senior politician. “As always those who occupied posts for five years but could not present a promising report card, are facing a hostile public. Convincing voters about their future performance could emerge as difficult for them, said a former parliamentarian.