Political parties have designed prominent advertisement messages for broadcast on TV and radio to capture the hearts and minds of the voters.
However, some observers say that apart from the different names and logos, Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT) and Druk Chirwang Tshogpa (DCT) have the same message due to similar ideologies and with women to head as party presidents.
The issue of similarities between the two new parties was also a point of deliberation during the recent presidential debates, where DCT and DNT were asked, if they have plans to combine or merge, after the primaries since they share very similar ideologies.
It was clarified during the event that perhaps, people find DNT and DCT similar since both run on social-democracy principles.
Nonetheless, the respective presidents pointed out how each party has prioritized and planned to implement things differently.
“Citizens interest is the central theme of our objective. Fostering democratic precedent where citizens have greater say and role in passing of the law and policies, and also believes in bottom-up approach,” said DCT president Lily Wangchhuk.
Meanwhile, DNT president Dorji Choden said in the local media, “We are centre left in keeping with our political ideology of social democracy.”
The DNT and DCT both have 47 confirmed candidates and passed the Election Commission (ECB) criteria to be eligible for the primary round of elections and both parties lay importance on the principles of justice, freedom, and solidarity.
The DNT focuses on strengthening democracy and development process, whereas, DCT focuses on cultural development, women empowerment, youth, economy, and foreign relations.
DNT believes addressing all issues through a consensus and evidence-based decision making will reduce unemployment, and youth taking to alcohol and other unsocial activities.
DCT believes in transparent recruitment system, cooperating with private sector, widening vocational training institutes (VTI) across the country, and plans to reduce unemployment through education, and advocacy and awareness programs.
Ensuring a successful process and transition of democratic institutions is a priority for DCT and DNT presidents.
DNT president Dorji Choden said, “The foremost task will be to guarantee the independence of the democratic institutions, and to empower them to carry out their responsibilities as enshrined in the Constitution.”
DCT president Lily Wangchhuk said, “DCT’s immediate priority will be to straighten out the economy and get it back into form.”
If elected, both the parties want to serve the Tsa Wa Sum based on the principles of justice, freedom, and solidarity.
Sangay Choda / Thimphu