The South Thimphu People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidates have lashed out at Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) statement made earlier about common forums during the recently conducted PDP press conference.
The DPT had stated that common forums are not required.
“We are talking about the people when we are talking about the common forum,” South Thimphu PDP candidate designate Tandin Wangmo said.
“Common forum is neither for candidates nor parties, it’s for the people to understand all parties’ manifestos and make a right choice.” She also added that common forum is the place where candidates of four parties can come together, and where people can raise any issues or pertinent questions on parties, candidates, etc.
The DPT had also accused PDP for politicizing the armed forces and the monk body, although they are apolitical entities.
“We didn’t say that monastic body should be given chance to vote,” said PDP candidates.
Tandin Wangmo said that armed force and monk body are citizens of our country, and they should be given equal opportunity as others. She added that PDP was not against the Constitution.
“We want all our citizens to be given equal rights and opportunities, we respect our Constitution,” she said.
Tandin Wangmo added that the soldiers in the armed forces are also the country’s hardworking citizens, who work twenty four hours, and should be given equal rights as is given to civil servants.
In addition, she said, equity and justice should be given to our monk body and supported as they usually come from a poor background.
“It’s very sad to know that our senior ministers or citizens are talking about politicizing the armed forces and monk body at this time,” said the south Thimphu PDP candidate.
Helping armed forces and monastic bodies, as related during the conference by PDP doesn’t mean that it was against Constitution.
“If it is not at par then our pledge is that we look into the pension benefits of the armed force members, review it, and submit it to His Majesty,” she added.
Talking on the topic of pledges made by the PDP about buying two helicopters, she said, we pledged to buy them, and can buy two in five years.
She justified that the previous government (DPT) spent US$ 9.1mn in hiring McKinsey, and if that money was saved, the country could have bought more than five helicopters.
The DPT government hired the helicopter from a private company in Nepal paying US$ 2500 per hour.
“We can buy two helicopters over the years, and can afford it,” Tandin Wangmo said.
DPT had only talked about the achievement they had brought during the tenure of five years, but never been transparent to the people, she added.
She said if PDP gets the power to rule the government, “Our first step will be to re-open the case of Bhutan Lottery, and reason why the report of Royal Audit Authority was not made open. 2013 election will tell whether young leaders will lead the country or whether the country sticks to old traditional school of leaders,” said Tandin Wangmo.