Parties gear up for elections

As the country prepares for the third parliamentary election, political parties are busy making several changes in their structures, prepare strategies, hold conventions, elect leaders and nominate candidates.

Other than Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) currently represented in the parliament, other parties such as Druk Chirwang Tshogpa (DCT), Bhutan Kuen-nam Party (BKP), Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT) and Druk Gaki Tshogpa (DGT) and gearing up for the elections.

The Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) has indicated the National Assembly elections would be held between August-September this year. Only two parties would be represented at the National Assembly while others will be eliminated in the preliminary round.

DPT, DNT and BKP are busy announcing their candidates for the elections while DGT has recently submitted its application for registration. DCT, which received less than 10% votes mandatory for state funding the subsequent elections, is likely to merge with other parties. The party does not have any active members including president. If the party runs this time, with no state funding, and fails to get 10% votes, the party will be deregistered with election commission.

PDP said it will announce its candidates after the conclusion of the National Council elections, scheduled for March 20.

DNT, whose founding president abandoned the party to join PDP and become minister, is likely to get a new president – Dr Lotey Tshering – a popular face among Bhutanese as practising physician and surgeon.

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