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Maoists joining govt today

KATHMANDU, Feb 21: Two Maoist parliamentarians will be joining the KP Oli-led government on Wednesday, as the UML and CPN (Maoist Center), two partners in the left coalition, intensify intraparty homework to give full shape to the cabinet. 

The three-member cabinet announced during the formation of the new government last week has yet to get full shape. UML and Maoist Center have agreed to limit the cabinet to 15 members but leaders said a few more portfolios would be added if the Madhes-based parties joined the government. The left coalition, which is in charge of the federal government and six of the seven provinces, is holding discussions to induct the Federal Socialist Forum Nepal into the government. Left leaders said that both UML and Maoist Center are going to induct some MPs in the new cabinet on Wednesday, while others would be inducted later this week. Both parties on Tuesday held internal discussion to select ministers but could not settle the matter.

With several candidates eying cabinet berths, both the parties are expected to face big challenge in selecting ministers. More than three dozen leaders have been lobbying to secure ministerial berths.While Ishwar Pokharel would be the second senior-most representative of the UML in the government, there is a big dispute in the Maoist Center over who will lead the party’s team in the government. Maoist Center leaders said three leaders — Ram Bahadur Thapa, Barshaman Pun and Janardan Sharma — have expressed their interest to become deputy prime minister, the second seniormost post in the government. Talking to reporters in Chitwan on Tuesday, Maoist Center Chairman Dahal said that two MPs from his party would join the government on Tuesday. He said that other names would be decided through internal discussion.
Besides three leaders, Matrika Yadav, Pampha Bhusal Chakrapani Khanal, Shakti Basnet, Amik Sherchan, Girirajmani Pokharel and Devendra Paudel are seen as possible contenders for ministerial berths.

Published Date: Wednesday, February 21st, 2018 | 08:35 AM

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