Nepal’s Rashtriya Swatantra Party has decided to pull out of the newly formed government led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ and ministers have resigned en masse as rifts within the ruling coalition widen. The fourth largest party RSP held a meeting on Sunday to quit the government and decided to walk out of the government. The announcement was made by party president Rabi Lamichhane.
“The ministers will also submit their resignations to the prime minister today itself,” Lamichhane said. The rift within the ruling coalition began last month after the Supreme Court invalidated Lamichhane’s MP post over a citizenship issue. Lamichhane was also the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Affairs Minister at the time the court delivered the verdict. After being removed from the post, Lamichhane held several rounds of meetings with PM Prachanda to demand his reinstatement and threatened to walk out of the alliance if the demands were not met.
The Lamichhane-led RSP had created a storm in the November 2022 general elections by emerging as an alternative force and the hope of the people. But recently the party suffered a major setback in the citizenship issue. Lamichhane was found to be using an American and Nepalese passport at the same time. The matter is under investigation.
Earlier, on January 27, the Supreme Court of Nepal had disqualified RSP president Rabi Lamichhane as a member of the parliament over his dual citizenship. He also had to lose the posts of home minister and party president. The Supreme Court ruling clearly stated that Lamichhane had lost his Nepali citizenship after becoming a US citizen. According to the Kathmandu Post, he used his legally terminated citizenship to obtain a Nepali passport and contest the election to the lower house. The RSP held the Ministries of Labour, Employment and Social Security, Education, Science and Technology in the Dahal government. In addition, the MP was in the government as Minister of State for the Ministry of Health and Population.
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