Opposition Party says govt fulfilled only 1 out of 25 pledges

The Opposition party in a press release said that the government in its own assessment, claimed to have fulfilled most of its pledges but that these claims should be subjected to proper scrutiny and interpretation by the public.

“The government has provided a feel-good, flattering assessment of its performance in delivering its 120 days pledges and claimed that they have fulfilled most of their pledges.

However, the opposition party feels that contrary to what the government has claimed, they have not fulfilled the majority of their pledges,” said the release.

The opposition party said its assessment is based on the language, campaign platform, social and economic implications of the pledges and the opposition’s stand and spproach.

“We are in total agreement with the Foreign Minister’s statement that “every pledge has to be read for what it stands for.” For example, there has to be a distinction between the pledges “to establish” and the pledges “to initiate.” Likewise, one has to interpret the verb “develop” differently from “review” as they differ in intent and scope. When one says, establish or develop, it would mean that by the end of the given period, the pledges would have been fulfilled and not just initiated or reviewed,” said the release.

The Opposition said that elections are won on the basis of campaign pledges and how they are presented to the voters.

It said that during the campaign, DNT had repeatedly stated that all their pledges were well researched and formulated after exhaustive consultations over a period of five years and do not need any further analysis.

“Whether this was the case or not was there for all to judge from how the government went about in trying to fulfill their pledges,” said the release.

DPT said that in assessing its performance, the government has not provided any substantive information and justifications on the likely implications of the pledges they have implemented and how these were implemented.

“We realize that we stand to be criticized if we do not provide our views, as the government would then say that we have not raised any concerns before they started implementing if the outcome turns out to be bad.

Likewise, we also stand to be blamed for obstructing and not allowing the government to function if we aggressively oppose the government’s decisions.

Therefore, we have given enough opportunity and space for the new government to settle down and learn the ropes of governance,” said the release.

Coming to DPT’s assessment of the government’s delivery of its 120 days pledges it said that n the positive side, the government made a good start in bringing the people together and that it deserves appreciation of its efforts to be more inclusive in decision- making.

The party said that the most significant pledge that the government has tried to implement was the removing of the Class X cut-off point.

DPT said this controversial move, despite concerns expressed by the Opposition and other stakeholders, was “bulldozed” by the government as mentioned by Lyonchen.

“Why and how this pledge was implemented leaves us with more questions than answers to our current social and economic woes.

How this major change in our educations system would bridge the gap between the rich and poor, enhance quality of education, promote private sector participation and growth, improve the labor and employment structure, strengthen the economy and contribute towards a self-reliant and healthy nation, is difficult to fathom,” said the release.

The party said that if it goes by what was said and reported, then much tongue-twisting and arm-twisting was done to get the private school owners to agree to the government’s terms and conditions. It asked on what are the mechanisms put in place to deal with the thousands of Class XII students who would not qualify for higher studies.

DPT said that out of the four pledges, where the government has pledged to establish, only the tourism development board is put in place and could be rated as partially achieved. It said the establishment of a high level committee to draft the vision 2045 document, a dedicated water agency and a private sector development committee, remain unfulfilled and are in a preliminary stage of discussion at best.

It said of the two pledges, where the government has pledge to institute, the fourth pay commission to revise civil service salaries and allowance, was fulfilled.

“The pledge to institute mechanisms for delivery of public services in Gewogs and Thromdes through one-stop shops remain unfulfilled as no tangible actions were seen to be taken,” said the release.

It said that as admitted, the government’s intention to convert the Samrang project into a vegetable farming project was reverted in spite of their claim during the campaign that they will close the farm based on their analysis at that time and in deference to the sentiments of the public.

The Opposition said that the pledges to develop ‘Sung-Joen App’, provide free access, 24/7, to all online data within the country, enumerate and provide budget to all community Lhakhangs, use electric/hybrid cars by cabinet ministers, etc., are not achieved and no visible actions are seen to be taken.

It said that an important and popular pledge, to implement free nutritious lunch program in all schools is yet to materialize.

It said that on the other pledges, which begin with the verbs – identify, review, initiate, contribute etc., there is no basis to offer an objective assessment as a single meeting regardless of the outcome, could be construed as an achievement.

“The Opposition Party feels that the government’s own assessment of its 120 days achievements is overrated and hyped up. On the ground, their delivery did not match their assessment and did not meet the expectations of the public at large.

Only one pledge, i.e. the institution of the Pay Commission was fully achieved,” said the release.

It said around four others were achieved partially, which includes the removal of Class X cut off point and Class VI examinations, resolving taxi issues, establishment of tourism development board and private sector development committee.

The party said that the rest remain unfulfilled. It said that while it understands that the government needs time to study and experiment, but the question is whether or not, this luxury can be afforded.

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