Kathmandu: There are only 91 women lawmakers in the 275-member Nepal Parliament, the Election Commission said on Wednesday, lower than the 33 per cent reservation mandated for women by the Constitution.
Nepal went to the polls on November 20 to elect 275 representatives to the House of Representatives (HoR) and 550 members to the seven Provincial Assemblies.
Nepal Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba’s Nepali Congress-led five-party coalition is two seats away from a simple majority after securing 136 seats in the HoR.
Out of 275 newly elected members in HoR, 184 are men and 91 are women, which constitutes only 31.10 per cent representation for women, the Election Commission said.
However, Nepal’s Constitution mandates 33 per cent reservation for women in Parliament. Women candidates fared slightly better in Provincial Assemblies though, registering 36.36 per cent by clinching 200 out of the 550 seats.
The Election Commission will be submitting the final results to Nepal President Bidya Bhandari. In the 275-member HoR, 165 are elected through direct voting, while the remaining 110 get elected through a proportional electoral system.
A party or a coalition needs 138 seats to win a clear majority. The Nepali Congress has emerged as the single largest party with 89 seats after the Election Commission allocated seats to all the political parties under the proportional voting system.
The other partners of the ruling alliance have together secured 47 seats – CPN-Maoist Centre (32), CPN-Unified Socialist (10), Loktantrik Samajwadi Party (4) and Rashtriya Janamorcha one seat.
The C. K. Raut-led Janamat Party, which secured only one seat in the House of Representatives (HoR) under the first-past-the-post category, got 5 seats under the proportional representation (PR) category, which means that the party will have a total of six members in the House.
Last week, Prime Minister Deuba met Raut at the Prime Minister’s residence and discussed matters relating to forging cooperation in the days ahead, sources said.
Earlier this month, Nepal’s Election Commission said seven political outfits, including the newly-floated Rastriya Swatantra Party were accorded the status of a national party.
Securing a three per cent proportional representation vote is mandatory to become a national party in Nepal. The CPN-UML, Nepali Congress, CPN (Maoist Centre), Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP), Rastriya Prajatantra Party, Janata Samajbadi Party and Janamat Party have been accorded this status, the Kathmandu Post newspaper quoted Guru Prasad Wagle, spokesperson at the Nepal’s Election Commission, as saying.
Elections to the HoR and seven provincial assemblies were held to end the prolonged political instability that has plagued the Himalayan nation.