Kathmandu, Apr. 12: The Election Commission (EC) has stated that ballot papers needed for 28 districts have been printed so far, as a part of its preparation to conduct the local elections on May 13. Addressing a regular press meet on Monday, EC Spokesperson Saligram Sharma Poudel said that 4.522 million ballot papers were printed so far. “The number could cover the demand of 28 districts, and printing of the ballot papers for other districts was underway,” he added.
The EC has been printing ballot papers first for the remote districts, keeping in mind the transportation barriers. Ballot papers are being printed at the state-run Janak Education Materials Centre (JEMC). According to the EC, a total of 19.4 million ballot papers of 77 types and 23 rows will be printed for the upcoming local level elections.
Ballot papers for Kathmandu would be the longest, with 56 rows each, whereas ballot papers for Dolpa district would be the shortest with only 16 rows. Although there are a total 17.73 million plus voters for the polls, the EC will print 19.40 million ballot papers keeping in mind the need for additional ballot papers required at some places.
Similarly, the commission has stated that 23,800 voters have been added after the announcement of the election date and before the implementation of the code of conduct. Furthermore, the EC is conducting orientation training from April 12-16 for 753 returning officers and 77 chiefs of district election offices of all provinces.
According to Poudel, Chief Election Commissioner Dinesh Kumar Thapaliya will facilitate the training in Province-1, Commissioner Sagun Shamsher Jawara in Gandaki Province and Commissioner Janaki Kumari Tuladhar will facilitate the orientation programme in Karnali Province.
Poudel also urged the media to play its role in holding the local elections in a free, fair, credible and fear-free environment. Meanwhile, the Election Commission has stated that it will publish a 'Local Level Election Bulletin' every day from April 14 to provide easy access to information on activities related to the local level elections.
The bulletin would be available on the website of the commission, said Spokesperson Poudel.
Press council to monitor media The commission has signed an agreement with the Press Council Nepal to monitor the media for the full compliance of the election code of conduct. Spokesperson Poudel said that Council has taken the responsibility to check if any media (print, electronic and online media) violates the election code of conduct, which has been implemented from Friday midnight.
The EC further stated that it has received commitment from 13 organisations to conduct the local poll in a free, fair and credible manner. Thirteen organisations, including Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) have committed to abide by the various provisions of the Constitution of Nepal, Election Commission Act 2017, Political Parties Act 2017, Election (Offence and Punishment) Act 2017, Local Level Election Act 2017 and Election Code of Conduct 2022. EC seeks explanation from CPN (Unified Socialist)
The Election Commission (EC) has demanded an explanation from Madhav Kumar Nepal-led CPN (Unified Socialist) for violating the election code of conduct. The Election Commission (EC) has sought explanation from ruling coalition party CPN (Unified Socialist) within three days following the media report that the party has violated election code of conduct during the public meeting held at Bhrikutimandap on April 9.
“The party has been instructed to give a satisfactory explanation within three days along with evidence,” the EC’s statement read.
EC seeks reply from Sashank Koirala Similarly, the commission has also demanded an answer from Nepali Congress leader Dr. Shashank Koirala regarding his statement on the expenditure incurred in the House of Representatives election 2017.
In his recent statement, leader Dr. Koirala stated that he had spent more than Rs. 60 million in the HoR election. “As the expenditure details submitted by Dr. Koirala to the commission shows that he had only spent Rs. 2.175 million in the previous, the EC has sought reply from him within six days following his statement,” said Poudel.