Category Archives: governance

my experiences with the governance in Nepal and how I have dealt so far. Plus my critique on the state of affairs.

Why did we write our own constitution of Nepal?

- Read a version of this is on Myrepublica news here.

There comes a day in our lifetime when we Nepali must choose a path that will decide the future of our country.

Today, we are at the cross-roads and must make a choice: Do we unite Nepali of all ages, ethnic groups and beliefs to transform Nepal into a shining beacon of humanity? Or, do we accept Nepal as a failed nation?

Our common sense tells us, “It is our right to live free in a Nepal ruled by law.”  Therefore, it is our responsibility to rise against anyone who restricts us from our non-negotiable rights. Should Nepal’s rulers withhold us from our rights, it becomes our duty to organize ourselves to protect our rights. Standing up for these rights ensures that our government always remains a servant of us citizens, never our master.

Our constitution is our right! Timely delivery of constitution is non-negotiable. Each day we delay this, countless Nepali die inside and outside the country because of Nepal’s failed system. Millions of Nepali are forced to take extreme measures to survive. Many leave the country. Those who stay behind face the harsh realities of absence of law, pervasive criminal corruption, lawlessness and denial of justice. While we Nepali suffer in millions, our rulers fail to rise above their myopic party politics. They claim Nepal will be better after declaration of the new constitution, which they never show. As our society slowly degenerates,  ‘bibek’ is getting replaced by ‘bal’ as a new generation grows up seeing ‘hopelessness, corruption and apathy’ all around.

 Our representatives have taken hundred of billions from us to build this constitution. Yet, they continue to fail miserably after 6 agonizing long years. They repeatedly make baseless promises.  However, they never deliver that one unifying law, our constitution. What crime is worse than this?

 Enough is Enough! We must build an alternative. This is why BibekSheel Nepali united concerned citizens from all walks of life to build and publish a new constitution on Magh 8, 2071. We have not spent a single paisa of Nepali taxpayer money and have delivered a working constitution for the Nepali people.

You may ask – why have we created the Nepali Constitution when those elected to do so have failed?

We wanted to prove that Nepali constitution can be built on hope, not fear. It can be built with honest intentions. It can be built by diverse people from different walks of life without wasting billions and years fighting. Nepalese must unite if those sent to work for us, fail.

Overall, we wanted to offer Nepali people an option. You might further ask, what are the major attributes of our version of the Nepali Constitution, and why should Nepali people care?

We started building this constitution 3 years ago. During this time, we asked – What will create the environment for fair prosperity of all Nepali people? What will deliver timely and adequate justice? What will lay the foundation for the right leadership to lead successive governments that deliver to the people? What will free our elected officials from being held hostage by party or tribe or caste or sex? What will hold timely elections? What will give strong mandate (space and time) to leaders to deliver their promises? What will allow equality among citizens without discrimination? What will protect the tradition and culture of Nepal’s diverse groups while allowing cultural harmony?

We believe our published Nepal constitution 2071 has balanced solutions to the above questions. It is pragmatic and an evolving law of our land.

You may add – how did all this start?
Our constitution building process started the day after the first Constituent Assembly was dissolved on May 28th 2012, nearly 3 years ago.

We looked around us. We took lessons from hundreds of citizens’ gatherings to understand our society. We consulted with experts holding differing stands to educate ourselves on the complexities of the problems. Then painfully, one by one, we assembled volunteers from all walks of life who believed in our vision of creating a prosperous Nepal within our lifetime. We used technologies like the internet to bridge distances and collaboration gaps.

We looked outside. We researched 18th century constitutions like that of the USA. We studied 20th century constitutions like those of South Africa and Switzerland. We analyzed those that didn’t have one, like the UK. We evaluated those of emerging economies in South America and Africa as well as our immediate neighbors in the north and south. We found how they were succeeding but also had painfully learnt their lessons and how they found solutions. We also learnt Nepal with its diversity and geo-political location needs to find its own path and cannot blindly follow the paths of other nations.

In 2013, we literally walked for months, collecting dreams of thousands of Nepali people from all fourteen zones of Nepal. We continued studying the differences inside the Constituent Assembly over the last 6 years. We finally came together to draft a constitution that was simple for an ordinary Nepali to understand, and mature to become the law of our land.

What is amazing is – not a single paisa has been paid to the hundreds of reviewers and contributors involved!

Our constitution building process continues. We have published our first draft. We will incorporate more citizen concerns and aspirations so all Nepali will unite to own this constitution. After all, this is a constitution built from the dreams of all Nepali we have interacted with over the last few years.

We hope that our published constitution will be owned by Nepali citizens and by the constituent Assembly of Nepal. We hope more Nepali will improve it and tell their constituent assembly members what they want.

We have in our constitution tried hard to find a middle ground to address the great divide inside the constituent assembly and outside specially on the issues of federalism, identity, style of governance and election systems. We hope this will inspire even the Constituent Assembly members to find answers to their differences and learn from our proposed models. We have taken a middle path to building this pragmatic constitution that works for now and for our important future. We hope this will bridge the gaps between us Nepali people and unite all Nepali who believe in common sense.

Nepal’s Constitution should be of the people, for the people and by the people.

It is time Nepali people have an option to choose.

To read the Nepal Constitution BibekSheel Nepali has proposed, please go here: www.leadnepal.com/nepalconstitution

 

Warm Regards,
Ujwal Thapa
Chairperson,
BibekSheel Nepali.

 

 

Federal Republic of Nepal
Federal Republic of Nepal
English version of Nepal government structure in bibeksheel constitution
Nepal government structure

 

How is  the legislature elected in Nepal ?
How is the legislature elected in Nepal ?

 

 

जब दल बन्छ – तब न देश बन्छ !

शक्तिमा पुग्न सिपालु। चलाउन भने मरु ?

अहिलेका प्रमुख राजनीतिक दलहरु सरकारमा पुग्न निकै सिपालु छन्। यसमा कुनै दुईमत रहेन। एक पछि अर्को दल पालै पालो निरन्तर सत्ता पुगेको इतिहासले प्रश्ट देखाँउछ। तर सत्तामा पुगे पछि सरकार चलाउन भने असक्षमै ठहरिएको इतिहासले प्रश्ट देखाउँछ। देशकै संविधान पटक पटक बनाउन असक्षम हुनु एक प्रमुख कारण पनि यहि हो।

हाम्रा दलहरु राज गर्न किन असक्षम छन्?

मुल कारण हाम्रा दलहरुले बनाउने नेतृत्वमा ‘राज्य व्यवस्थापन’ गर्ने सीप नभएरै हो। प्रजातन्त्रमा राज्य व्यवस्थापन भनेको त्यस्तो सीप हो जसले सरकारका ३ प्रमुख निकाय न्यायपालिका, व्यवस्थापिका र कार्यपालिका बीच नियन्त्रण र सन्तुलन गरि चलाउन सक्छ। यी ३ निकायलाई सहि व्यवस्थापन गरी शाषण गर्ने कुनै पनि सरकार दिगो, जनउत्तरदायी र प्रजातान्त्रिक रहन्छ, अर्थात सफल बन्छ। यहि नियन्त्रण र सन्तुलनको सहि व्यवस्थापन गर्ने सीप हाम्रो प्रमुख दलका नेतृत्वमा नभएकाले नै हाम्रो देश एक-पछि अर्को संक्रमणमा छिरी रहेको छ।

लोकतन्त्रमा राज्य हाँक्ने नेतृत्व राजनीतिक शक्तिहरु बाटै निखारिएर आँउछ। समस्या यहिँ नै देखिन्छ। अहिलेका कुनै पनि प्रमुख राजनीतिक शक्ति भित्रको प्रणाली हेर्नु भयो भने उनको संरचना “शक्ति प्राप्ति”को लागि मात्र चुस्त बनाईएको हुन्छ – “शक्तिको सहि उपयोग” को लागि बनाईएको हुन्न। तर शक्तिको सहि उपयोग भनेकै ‘राज्य व्यवस्थापनको’ सीप हो जुन बिना त्यो शक्ति असफल नै रहन्छ।

मेरो तर्क यत्ति हो कि यदि राजनीतिक दलहरु देश चलाउन सफल हुन चाहन्छन् भने उन्‌का नेतृत्वले आफ्नो दल भित्रै “राज्य व्यवस्थापन”को निरन्तर अभ्यास गरिरहनु पर्छ। यस्तो महत्वपूर्ण सीप सत्तामा गईसकेपछि सिक्न समय नै रहँदैन। यदि आफु भित्रै बाट राज्य व्यवस्थापन गर्न सक्ने नेतृत्व उत्पादन गर्न सकेन भने जुनै शक्ति पनि सत्तामा पुगेपछि अहिले जस्तै बाटो बिराई राख्नेछन्।

बर्तमान राजनीतिक दल भित्र प्राय कस्तो संरचना छ त?

दलका केन्द्रिय समिति सत्तामा पुग्न आत्तुर नेतृत्वकै सत-प्रतिशत बाहुल्य छ। उनीहरुलाई नियन्त्रण र सन्तुलन गर्ने कोहि पनि हुन्न र राज्य व्यवस्थपान सिकाउने कुनै पनि प्रणाली छैन। यहिँ बाट नै कुशासनको जड शुरु हुन्छ। यस कुशासनलाई जरैबाट उखेल्न नविन २१ वौँ शताब्दी सापेक्ष ‘राज्य व्यवस्थापन” गर्न  सक्ने सक्षम नेतृत्व बनाउने संयन्त्रको आवश्यकता पर्छ। म त्यस्तै एक संरचना प्रस्ताव गर्न चाहन्छु।

एउटा २१ वौँ शताब्दी सापेक्ष राजनीतिक दलको भित्र कस्तो संरचना हुन्छ?

 त्यस दलको केन्द्रिय समिति ३ स्वायत्त निकायमा बाँडिएको हुन्छ – व्यावस्थापिका, न्यायपालिका, कार्यपालिका।

Ideal 21st century political party structure in Nepalपहिलो निकाय देश हाँक्न चाहने नेताहरुले ओगोटेका हुन्छन् जसलाई दलको “व्यवस्थापिका” भनिन्छ (राज्यको जस्तै)। उनीहरुलाई योग्यतामुखी तरिकाले यहाँ चयन गरिनेछ।

 दोस्रो निकाय दलको यस्तो निकाय हो जसले संगठनको व्यवस्थापिका जस्तै उत्तिकै १/३ शक्ति बोकेको हुन्छ। यहाँ यस्ता व्यक्तित्वले हुन्छन्‌ जसले संगठनको मुल मर्म, मार्गदर्शन र विधानको संरक्षन गर्छन्। यसले हरेक सदष्यलाई कुनै पनि कार्य गर्दा दलको विधान अनि देशको संविधान संवत काम गरेको छ कि छैन सल्लाह दिई राख्छ, खबरदारी गरिरहन्छ र परि आए कारवाही पनि गर्नेछ। यस निकायको मद्दतले दलका हरेक सदष्यले आफु ठीक बाटोमा हिँडी राख्न र न्याय सम्मत किसिमले अभियान, समाजसेवा र शक्ति प्राप्तिको अभ्यास गर्छन्। धेरै हदसम्म देशको न्यायपालिकाको जस्तै भुमिका हुन्छ।

 तेस्रो निकाय: कार्यपालिका दलको बाँकी १/३ शक्ति बोकेको स्वायत्त निकाय हो जसले दलको प्रशासन चलाँउछ। कार्यपालिकाले दलका नेताले चलाएका अभियानलाई चुस्त, पारदर्शी र दिगो व्यवस्थापन गर्ने काम गर्छन्। दल भित्र यसको भुमिका देशको प्रशासनको जस्तै रहन्छ। जसरी राज्यको श्रोत व्यवस्थापन सरकारको कार्यपालिकाले गर्छ, त्यसरी नै दलको श्रोत व्यवस्थापन पनि दल भित्रको कार्यपालिकाले गर्छ। यसको निगरानीमा दलका हरेक सदष्यले दलको चुस्त कार्य व्यवसथापनको अभ्यास गर्छन्  र त्यहि सीप वडा, गाउँ, शहर, क्षेत्र देखि केन्द्र सम्म व्यवहारमा ढाल्छन्।

यदि सबै दल भित्र यसरी नै केन्द्र देखि एकाई सम्मै यहि ढाँचा संस्थागत गरियो भने वडा देखि नै दलका प्रत्यक सदष्यहरु (देशका भावी नेतृत्व) राज्य व्यवस्थापनको सहि अभ्यास गर्ने छन्। हरेक कार्यमा दलका सदष्यले राज्य सन्चालनमा चाहिने सन्तुलन देखि नियन्त्रण, अनुशासन देखि श्रोत व्यवस्थापन, नीति निर्माण देखि पारदर्शीपन, जवाफदेहिता देखी ‘सेवक सरकार’ मनोवृति आदि अभ्यास गर्दै जानेछन्। यसरी दलका हरेक नेतामा  सरकार नपुग्दै पनि राज्यका बिभिन्न निकायलाई संयम, चुस्त र कुटनीतिक तवरले सफल कार्य व्यवस्थापन गर्ने सीप बिकास भएको हुन्छ।

अब एक पल्ट मानौँ कि यस्तो २१ वौँ शताब्दीका कुनै दलको संरचनाबाट अभ्यास गर्दै गर्दै भोळी एक नेता देशकै मन्त्री भए रे। त्यहाँ पुगी उनी कसरी प्रस्तुत हुन्छन् त? पहिलो कुरो त यी नया मन्त्रीका नैतिकता र अभिप्रायमा शंका गर्ने ठाँउ रहन्न किन भने बर्षौँ सम्म उनलाई आफ्नै दलको न्यायापालिकाले नजिकबाट निगरानीमा राखेर ‘फिल्टर’ गरिरहेको हुन्छ। अनि देशको कार्यपालिकालाई कसरी काम गराउने कुरामा उनलाई खासै टाउको दुखाई हुँदैन किन कि बर्षौँसम्म दल भित्रैका प्रशासकहरुसँगै मिलेर कुशल प्रशासन व्यवस्थापन गर्ने अनुभव बुटली सकेका हुन्छन्। उनी दल भित्रै व्यवस्थापिकामा बसी धेरै सँग मिलेर नीति नियम तयार गर्ने काम गर्दा गर्दै खप्पिस भईसकेका हुनाले देशलाई चाहिने नीति नियम अरुसँग मिलेर बनाउन पनि गाह्रो भएन। यी मन्त्रीले आफ्नो काम शुरु गर्छन् न्यायपालिकासँग उचित परामर्श गरी, व्यवस्थापिकासँग नीति नियम समयमै संसोधन गराई कार्यपालिकाको मद्दतले शशक्त कार्यन्वन गर्न पुग्छन्। यसरी उनी आफ्नै कार्यकालमा शक्तिको सदुपयोग भरपुर गर्छन्। यसरी यी दलका नेतृत्व र दल देशका सफल शासक बन्छन्।

२१ वौँ शताब्दीमा विधिको शासनमा चल्न-चलाउन सक्ने अनि नीति-नियमको सहि र समयमै कार्यन्वन गराउन सक्ने नेतृत्वले मात्र हाम्रो देशलाई संमृद्ध बनाउन सक्छ हाम्रै कालखण्डमा। देश बनाउँछु भन्दै हिँडनेले जब देश चलाउने सीपहरु यसरी आफ्नै दल भित्र सिक्दै जानेछन्, सरकारमा पुगेपछि शक्तिको सहि उपयोग सजिलै सक्नेछन्।

 त्यसैले हरेक राजनीतिक दललाई मेरो बिनम्र अनुरोध: परिवर्तन आफै भित्रबाट शुरु गर्नुहोस् – आफ्नो संगठन भित्र यस्तै २१ वौँ शताब्दी समय सापेक्ष राज्य व्यवस्थापन प्रणाली अपनाउनुहोस्।

जब दल बन्छ – तब न देश बन्छ।

 

 उज्वल थापा
लेखक विवेकशील नेपाली दल का अध्यक्ष हुन् र यो दलको संरचना माथी प्रस्तावित ढाँचामै चली रहेको छ।

नागरिक पत्रिकामा पुश ३० गते छापिएको थियो

 

No representation without our constitution ! Goodbye!

No representation without my constitution

An open letter to 601 and your masters who failed Nepal from 28,000,000 Nepali like you and me.”

“You the 601 and the ones who you follow,
From this day, none of you, I repeat none of you, will have my representation, either in this election or ever again.

I am an alert, honest Nepali. Nepal is my country, therefore is my responsibility.  I know what is right and what is wrong.  And you all are so wrong!

You robbed 91,000,000,000, yes 91 billion rupees from nearly 30 million of us, (that is Rs 3,000 from each of us) by taking 4 years to finish a job you promised to complete in 2. In the end you gave us nothing except anguish, anger, hate, disunity and hopelessness ! Are you not ashamed at giving us such a return on our investment !

We sent you to finish making the constitution , not to turn 3 million Nepali sisters and brothers on each other. You have abused us in the name of representation. You have looted from us in the name of constitution. You have raped our trust and looted our dignity. What now remains for us ?

Answer me this. Why should we rehire you when you have proved utterly incompetent to handle? Why should we not ban you from this job forever? Yes.. that’s it. We will ban you from our conscience.

I hereby declare that you do not represent me anymore. I will do what I can, to make sure I don’t need your help anymore. I am not going to bend down to you anymore.
Until you mend your ways, I will not vote for you.

Nepali citizens are waking up as each day passes by. The critical mass of awake Nepali inch closer, uniting against your incompetence, abuse of authority, impunity and gross failures. Should you insist on ruling over us, we will gladly march to prison or the street, because under an unjust rule, the true place for a just Nepali is inside a jail or on the streets.

To see the change in Nepal, I am becoming that change. Today, I am taking that small step! From today, you have none of my representation. Enough is enough!

You are fired! Goodbye! 
Me, a Nepali citizen.

2 reasons Foreign aid is not effective in Nepal right now

Reason 1) Foreign aid is not a very effective means of dealing with the failure of nations around the world today. Far from it. Countries need inclusive economic and political institutions to break out of the cycle of poverty. Foreign aid can typically do little in this respect, and certainly not with the way it is now organized. Recognizing the roots of world inequality and poverty is important precisely so that we do not pin our hopes on false promises. As those roots lie in institutions, foreign aid, within the framework of given institutions in recipient nations will do little to spur sustained growth. In other words giving it to the institutions that are at fault, will not help.

Reason 2) Since development of inclusive economic and political institutions is key, using the existing flows of foreign aid at least in part to help such development would be useful. Putting conditions on aid (which is what some donors do in Nepal) is not the answer, as it requires existing rulers to make concessions which they usually don’t agree or just bypass.

Instead, we should perhaps structure foreign aid so that its use and administration brings groups and leaders otherwise excluded from power into decision-making process. Here are my few suggestions.

How about using Foreign aid to:

  1. give necessary tools -trainings to empower passionate previously apathetic youths to run independent “issue based” political grassroots campaigns?
  2. help train youth leaders outside the traditional political “syndicate” to become stronger in influencing political decision-making by showing them success stories around the world?
  3. help build incubators which provides immediate resources and mentorship to fresh entrepreneurs with a passionate team, who have been excluded from such opportunities?
  4. support grassroots entrepreneurs and citizen activists thereby empowering a broad segment of population than established exclusive elite ones who are supported today?
  5. reward any political platforms and institutions that show inclusiveness and meritocracy in action?
  6. help build leadership clubs in schools in rural Nepal where transparency and accountability are taught to young students.
  7. build leadership building academy for urban educated youths interested in politics and bureaucracy.
  8. invest in practical education. Help build Entrepreneurship clubs in every high school just like libraries.
    Add your own points…..

 

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This summary of this article is made possible through heavily borrowing and edits based on quotes from the book “Why Nations Fail” by Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson. The authors hold copyright to a lot of content in this article, therefore I cannot claim any right to this article. If  you consider this stealing, I apologize in advance. I only do this because their words seem to do justice than mine. If you are copying content from here, please attribute the article to the names mentioned above properly.

Thoughts on Political institutions and structures in Nepal : Summary of 7th open citizens meet-up in Kathmandu

See you tomorrow (Saturday) at 9:45 am for the 8th open meeting at GAA Thamel, Kathmandu (till 11:15 am). Here are some of the summaries of the last episode ( 7th meetup).

•There are strong links between political culture and literacy levels; with rising levels of literacy in Nepal, there is greater hope for a better system to come into place.

• Charismatic leadership circles, an enlightened mass, and a suitable political structure are needed in order for a better political culture to develop. In Nepal’s political history as well, people like B.P. Koirala, Madan Bhandari, etc. were charismatic leaders with a great vision, but they did not have an enlightened mass to support them, nor did they make an effective political structure to streamline their own governance and give their administration an efficient and transparent direction. In this sense, all these leaders who succeeded in specific historical events but failed in longer-term political processes were not successful because of the absence of a ‘good’ political structure within which to run.

• The differences between professional politicians and professionals who then get into politics is an important one. For instance, professional who already have a means to sustain themselves before and after they get into/ out of politics are more likely to be sincere, transparent, and not as entrenched in their own power-trips. On the other hand, politicians who depend almost entirely upon politics for their livelihood, professional politicians’, are more likely to be corrupt and less likely to support a fluid power structure.
A fluid power structure, with a constant (periodic) rotation of those in positions of power, is essential for a better political system and government.

• There are many institutional arrangements that can be made to make sure such fluidity of power. E.g. particular parties could make internal arrangements to make sure there is a fluid rotation of people as party leaders and to curtail the entrenched powers of the older leaders.

• A distributive “check and balance” mechanism for power is needed within a political leadership team, bureaucratic structure, party structure, and other institutionalized forms of governance.

• Maybe the focus be on the ways to split the relations between power and authority; there should be mechanisms to make sure greater distribution of power and responsibilities.

•It should be borne in mind that power is always delegated to powerful people; this is the basic tenet of democracy whereby leaders become powerful only because they receive support from their subordinates (or people).