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Editorial: NC-UML coalition government for stability

Editorial: NC-UML coalition government for stability
The parliamentary and provincial assembly elections have concluded in a free and fair environment.  This is the second periodic election held under the 2015 constitution. So, it is a milestone development in terms of the implementation of the constitution, which was opposed by Madhes-based parties and Janajatis. But the poll outcome has diminished the hope of government stability. The Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN- UML have emerged as the first and second largest parties. Still, the seat numbers of either of these parties are very low. If either one were to form the next government, it would need the support of four-five fringe parties. Such a coalition government is bound to be a fragile one. It could collapse anytime, triggering instability. The newly emerged parties and some old parties like Rastriya Prajatantra Party, meanwhile, have some reservations on the constitution and the federal set up. This does not augur well for the stability of the country.

One way to prevent this impending volatility can be an NC-UML coalition. UML seems ready to go for this option. Senior UML leaders including Bishnu Rimal have publicly stated that the party is ready to sit down for power-sharing talks with the NC. At this point, the NC should seriously consider this option.

The UML leaders have rightly said that the two big parties should shoulder the responsibility of ensuring a stable government. The NC-UML coalition government will be a strong one in terms of their parliamentary strength. Their numbers will allow the parliament to enact laws required to run the government. We have seen in the past how the involvement of many parties in government can paralyze both government and parliament functioning. Compared to other parties, we believe that the NC and UML can formulate an implementable common minimum program. They are also more mature when it comes to dealing with internal and external challenges. Barring a few issues, the two parties have almost similar positions on Nepal’s relation with big powers. Only a stable and strong government can revive people’s trust on major political parties and thereby to the current political system. If public frustration continues to rise, the system could collapse. For the greater good of the country, the NC and UML should put their differences aside and come together.