It is never a good idea to dismiss a political party or for that matter a politician given how unpredictable politics is.
However, recent events indicate deeper problems for the Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) party, which is also the Opposition party.
The withdrawal of the new North Thimphu candidate who was only publicly announced a week ago has sent shockwaves across the party. Whatever, the reason it is clear that the candidate, who was reluctant even before his introduction, does not want to be a DPT candidate.
For DPT the much bigger shock was the resignation of its star MP and ministerial candidate from the same constituency in the middle of his term. Apart from sending a negative signal to the larger party it also seems to have triggered the anger of the North Thimphu voters who had high hopes from the MP and were not prepared for an exhaustive bye-election process.
Despite official excuses of a Harvard course there is still a big question on why a bright and senior MP would sacrifice a promising political career for a short term course, unless of course he did not see much of a political future for himself.
Despite attempts at keeping a brave front, DPT, for all intents and purposes has witnessed a rapid decline from 2013 onwards. This is clearly visible if a comparison is done in the number of supporters and registered members in 2013 and now.
The 2008-2013 which saw five years of rule by the DPT saw the party making several mistakes and getting enmeshed in one too many controversies from which it is yet to recover. As a result the verdict of the voters was given in the 2013 general election results bringing to power the world’s smallest Opposition party.
However, all was not lost and there was still a lot of hope among its supporters that DPT would take a dignified position in the Opposition, keep the new government on its toes and hopefully make a recovery by 2018. However, the party made some grave and fundamental mistakes with a wild and senseless party meeting immediately a few days after the elections which will continue to haunt the party for the rest of its existence.
If this was not bad enough, the party as an organization does not seem to have learnt much lessons from its 2013 election debacle. There is still an alternate history in the party that seems to view the 2008-2013 period as a kind of a golden age when in reality it was plagued by many problems, a fair share of which was self-created. Though the party still cannot be dismissed, time is fast running out for the Opposition party.–
“Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
George Bernard Shaw