The country has now entered into an interim period as the interim constitution has been promulgated.Through that interim constitution interim legislature has been set up with the representation of 330 lawmakers.
It is broadly held that the present interim parliament is far more inclusive in its arrangement. The entire Maoist group is a new arrangement and they have made it reasonably representative of a various ethnic groups in spirit with 40% women lawmakers’ representation in the …
parliament. Well Maoist, hats off to you….! for your well-organized and encouraging beginning. In the realm of old parliamentarians, the Maoist has set forth an example of what exactly the inclusiveness is all about and now each party should follow the initiation taken by the Maoist.The new 330-member House has accommodated 209 members of old House of Representatives, a handful of upper members, 73 Maoist appointees and bonus 48 members appointed by seven political parties and CPN(Maoist). Among the total members, only 58 are women, in which, 31 members are appointed by Maoist itself. The remaining 26 members belong to other 12 parties. To sum it up only around 17% women representatives are there in interim parliament. It is a paradox that all other parties total women representatives are even lesser than the one party-Maoist women representatives.
Out of 73 members, Maoist has appointed 29 women (40%) as MPs of interim parliament and other 2 women on ten members’ bonus quota whereas the other parties already had 16 women as MPs and they have just appointed other 11 (29%) women on the quota of 38 MPs. In this way on bonus quota, Nepali Congress has appointed 3, CPN- UML 5, NWPP 1, People’s Front Nepal 1 and Sadbhawana (A) 1 as women MPs of interim parliament.
Appreciatively, the CPN (Maoist) has shown nobility in nominating the members on bonus quota. They have also elegantly veiled the deficiency of intellectual and academic supporters by appropriately putting forward 40% women in their slotted 73 seats. Even though, the CPN-UML nominated 3 members who had already lost in the last election, it also administered to soothe the denigration on the nomination of conflict victims, oppressed, marginalized and civil society members comprising 5 women members. But, both Nepali Congress parties did not bother to be responsive to the people’s contributions made during People’s Movement-II. They were compelled to selecting only party members who had lost in the last election and nepotism-based-members. Maoists brought the convincing faces whereas others denied to. Considering these facts, it is undeniable to see that the political parties have almost learnt no lesson from the past. However, if Maoists approach had been followed by all parties it would have certainly made the interim legislature an impressive House indeed.
It is a good thing that the political parties have at least highlighted the need to make the legislature more inclusive. No need to mention who has contributed more as it has indeed been unveiled. Whether the interim legislature has mix of inclusiveness and quality is a matter of separate discussion but quality and integrity of people should match the representation of the members. We must say that the moment was favorable for the parties but most of them lost their grip to catapult it. Well, the interim legislature is a stop-gap array that the country should not remain without a parliament even during the transitional phase.
So, the level of its quality will not be as vital as that of the parliament to be elected after the constituent assembly polls and promulgation of new constitution. But, everyone knows first impression is the last impression. How can the parties assure the people that total inclusiveness with at least 33% women representation of each parties will be there in new parliament? Therefore, peopel would like to ask whether the parties have any mechanized and plausible justification on it.