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Pakistan, China helping KP Sharma Oli split his party to stay in power



New Delhi: Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli is trying to split the Nepalese Communist Party (NCP) to save his chair, allegedly supported by China and Pakistan, amid growing calls for his resignation. After deciding to prorogue the House of Representatives, Oli is considering splitting his party via an ordinance, ET has reliably gathered.

He has also reportedly approached the main opposition – the Nepali Congress for support, sources told ET from Kathmandu. Oli plans to reintroduce the Ordinance to Political Parties Act, a shelved piece of legislation, to ease the way for him to split the party, ET has learnt. He has also allegedly received tacit support from Pakistan and China to save his chair, Kathmandu-based sources indicated to ET.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has reached out to Oli following his anti-India remarks. Simultaneously, the Chinese envoy in Kathmandu, Hou Yanqi, is also believed to be making efforts to keep Oli in power. The Chinese Ambassador in the Himalayan republic was an “inspiring factor” behind Oli’s many recent moves, ET has learnt. Hou earlier did athree-year stint in Pakistan. Faced with calls to resign as PM and as Party chair of the Nepal Communist Party, Oli on Thursday recommended that Parliament be prorogued, which the President approved.

Most the Standing Committee members of his party, 30 out of 44, had demanded his resignation. The ordinance will allow Oli time to regroup and postpone any moves for a no-confidence motion by his rivals. The ordinance Oli plans to reintroduce will allow him to split the party if needed. The faction most vocal against Oli includes co-Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal, and senior leaders Bamdev Gautam, Jhala Nath Khanal and Madhav Kumar Nepal.

If they go ahead with the split, Oli would require 138 lawmakers to prove his majority in Parliament. With 53 of his own party members (174 in total) on Dahal’s side and another 43 on Nepal’s side, Oli is banking on Congress’ 63 seats to push through. Passing the ordinance would require the support of only 30% central committee members or parliamentary party members. Oli easily commands 40%, according to a report in The Kathmandu Post.


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