The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) secured an overwhelming victory in Central Bhutan during the general elections. The party achieved an almost perfect score in central Bhutan, except one in Nubi-Tangsibji, Trongsa, going to the Bhutan Tendrel party.
Examining the electoral history of Central Bhutan reveals a dynamic landscape. In the 2008 elections, Bumthang, Zhemgang, and Trongsa displayed an equal divide in support between PDP and Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT). The constituencies were split, with each party securing victories in different areas. However, in 2018, Trongsa predominantly supported Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT), while the other central dzongkhags maintained a balanced divide.
This year’s unique shift in perspective in central Bumthang signifies a nuanced evaluation of the government’s performance during their respective tenures. Voters seem to be comparing the achievements of each party and selecting the one they believe will best serve their interests.
When asked about the reasons for their victory, winning candidates emphasized different factors. Kuenzang Thinley, the PDP candidate from Chokor Tang constituency, Bumthang, said, “My success to his long-standing presence in the constituency, personal connections, and the trust garnered over time.”
He also highlighted the PDP’s past performance as a crucial factor in winning voter confidence.
Lungten Dorji, the victorious PDP candidate from Panbang, said, “There are three key elements that let to our victory is the party’s leadership, voters’ assessment of the candidate’s capabilities, and resonance with the party’s pledges.”
Both candidates expressed eagerness to fulfill their campaign promises and contribute to the nation’s betterment.
Now that the candidates have been elected, the electorate is vocal about their expectations. Residents, such as Sonam Dendup from Panbang, express hope for swift developmental activities in their dzongkhag. There is optimism that the PDP’s return to power will bring about positive changes, particularly in areas like clean drinking water, farm roads, and education.
Sangay Jamyang expressed that it is a joy that PDP won, and the voters are looking forward to the fulfillment of campaign promises. The desire for a ministerial position for candidate Lungten Dorji, with proven capabilities as a former Dzongda, is a recurring theme among voters.
Likewise, Dorji wangchuk from Zhemgang said, “It is important for the candidates or the party to fulfill what was promised at all cost.”
“It will be best to have both the ministers from our dzongkhag,” he added.
Jigme Norbu from Bumthang and Tshering Dorji from Trongsa express a collective hope for a minister from their respective dzongkhags, viewing it as a source of pride and potential benefits for their regions.
The overwhelming support for PDP signifies a shift in voter expectations, emphasizing performance evaluation and resonance with party pledges. The success of individual candidates also reflects the importance of personal connections, leadership credibility, and alignment with voters’ aspirations.
As the newly elected representatives prepare to take office, the spotlight remains on their ability to translate campaign promises into tangible improvements for the people of central Bhutan. The expectations are high, and the electorate anticipates a transformative period under the leadership of PDP.