The Opposition Leader (OL) has responded to the PM’s statement in the recent Meet the Press where he proclaimed the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as a party disqualified for 2013.
Lyonchhen Jigmi Y. Thinley during the recent Meet the Press session said that the opposition party (PDP), should be disqualified from the next round of elections since they did not meet the June 30 deadline to clear all financial liabilities.
“I imagine the ECB would have disqualified the PDP from participating in the next round of elections,” Lyonchhen said. “That is a decision that should have been taken.”
The OL in response to the PM’s words said “The prime minister’s comments are unfortunate. He does not seem to understand the laws of the land. But more importantly, he seems eager to undermine other political parties instead of working to contribute to strengthening democracy in our country,” said the OL
“I think this is election commission’s business not DPT’s,” said Opposition member Damcho Dorji when asked about the Prime Minister’s statement.
The OL said PDP submitted a report to the ECB which outlines the status of the party as on 30th June.
He said “the ECB has not sent any notice disqualifying us from participating in the next elections”.
The OL said there is no law that disqualifies political parties which have not cleared all their debts from taking part in elections.
He said “the ECB has issued a notification to clear all our debts. We accept ECB’s guidance in this matter and are trying our best to clear all our dues”.
Contrarily the Chief Election Commissioner Dasho Kunzang Wangdi said “No decision was taken on PDP’s request for extension of deadline,” adding that June 30 was the deadline to clear the dues, and both the parties were given time until July 16 to submit the party status reports.
The OL said PDP has cleared most of its outstanding debts, and expected to clear the remainder within the next few weeks. “In the meantime we have sought ECB’s guidance and direction,” he said.
The Chief Election Commissioner said it would be inappropriate to presume anything before the status reports the two parties had submitted is fully reviewed. “We’ll make appropriate decisions once the study is done,” he said.
“The public fund division is going through the papers and it’ll be further reviewed by the commission,” he said.