PDP President says DPT is desperate
In a rebuttal to recent statements made by a few Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) candidates that DPT will be the ‘undisputed’ winner of the forth coming general elections, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) president Tshering Tobgay labeled it as desperation to cling on to power.
There has been many unconfirmed allegations that the DPT candidates have been trying to confuse voters by declaring their party as ‘the one that will form the next government,’ and asking voters to choose between the ‘ruling and the opposition.’
Meanwhile, DPT’s Haa Bji-Katsho candidate Dasho Dr Gado Tshering, during a live public debate, said it is up to the people of Haa “whether to remain in opposition forever or to join hands with the ruling party and boost developmental activities.”
Referring to the DPT victory during the primaries, Dasho Dr Gado Tshering said there is no way the party that won in 33 constituencies out of 47 would lose now.
During a recent press conference in the capital, the PDP president told local reporters that the DPT candidates and their supporters have started confusing and misleading the electorate. The president said, “Apart from making such statements during their tours across villages, they have now started coming out live on television to say that they will definitely win the elections, and people can decide whom to vote for.”
This, the president said is against the Electoral Laws. “They needn’t even campaign if that is so, and if they are campaigning they needn’t criticize another party to that extent,” he said. “That is unethical and that is illegal,” PDP president added.
During his campaign in parts of Samtse, Chukha and Dagana, the PDP president said DPT is now resorting to such tactics and there is only one reason – fear, “fear of losing out power which the DPT leadership has held for decades.”
He also said PDP is a much stronger party than it was in 2008. “They (DPT) are realizing that we are strong and that people wish for ‘change’. There is no point in having elections or democracy if they are the winner already as they claim,” Tshering Tobgay said.
He also added, “By PDP’s assessment we have a very good chance. People from all walks of life have support for us and are looking for change. So we have all the reasons to be optimistic but we would not go to the voters let alone come on TV to say that we are going to form the government and that you will be stuck in opposition if you do not vote for us.”
He said the PDP office has also received “extremely” disturbing reports from the field that if voter do not choose the DPT, the particular village will not receive any developmental work. “That is dangerous, divisive and extremely wrong,” said Tshering Tobgay.
“As far as PDP is concerned, we want to conduct a clean and honest campaign with open debate, within the framework of our laws, a campaign that His Majesty the King would expect. Let’s respect the democratic process and exercise some dignity and some sense of maturity. Let’s respect our citizens and let’s stop this nonsense of baseless allegations,” the president said.
The matter has been brought to the Election Commission of Bhutan’s notice through a complaint letter filed by PDP on Thursday. The PDP office has requested the ECB to put an end to such ‘illegal’ practices, manipulating and misleading voters at this point of time when the general election is just more than two weeks away.
Chief Election Commissioner Dasho Kunzang Wangdi said the commission will look into it as per the rules.
PDP president also said it would be best if a presidential debate could be arranged to clarify everything, but he said the DPT president have provided some lame excuses to avoid the debate.
Minjur Dorji / Dagana