Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) has jumped into interparty fight to that is likely to damage the image of the Druk Phunsum Tshogpa (DPT) in the eyes of Bhutanese voters.
The commission has stopped DPT’s candidate from Khar-Yurung in Pema Gatshel district from campaigning anymore. The restriction comes only few days before campaigning is closed.
Pema Gatshel is the district where DPT has the strongest presence and has biggest influence of former Prime Minister Jigme Y Thinley. Only last week, other party DNT president Dr Lotay Tshering had mentioned he failed to convince the district voters to vote for his party. His party filed complained to ECB soon after he returned to Tsirang district.
The DPT candidate had claimed that the voters were being influenced by the individuals from authority not to vote DPT. However, her claim has not been substantiated yet with facts. The party had claimed similar circumstances in 2013 election as well when it was wiped out of the power.
If the campaigning is proved to be rigged by the authority, it appears to be a planned step to bring inexperienced party into government every five years in order to keep control of the power.
Looking at the results from the primaries result and distribution of votes from PDP and BKP, the DPT have higher chances of returning to power with slimmer majority. In such circumstances, the party leaders would face high security risk.