Nepal Parliamentary and Presidential Governments

Preserving the current form of government will ease Nepals transition from a constitutional monarchy to a constitutional republic. If the nation were to suddenly switch voting procedures and governmental structures, the resulting confusion would threaten to undermine the fledgling system. Furthermore, a large number of Nepalese residents are either connected to or from India and are familiar with its parliamentary system.

A parliamentary system allows for a greater plurality of voices in the legislative branch of government. Nepal is an extraordinarily diverse country, with no one ethnic group comprising more than 15.5% of the nations population (CIA). The recent political strife in Nepal is partly rooted in the strong Maoist presence there. Maoist demands for political representation in parliament was finally granted during the recent turmoil in 2007 (CIA). Nepals main considerations when composing its new constitution and attendant form of government include maintaining political stability, permitting a plurality of voices to be heard in congress, and to prevent political corruption. The difficult process of forging a new state can be made easier by a conscientious constitution that clearly outlines the roles and duties of each branch and office of government. A system of checks and balances will reduce the potential for corruption or coup. Creating a separate office of president not unlike the Israeli model will allow Nepal to achieve its ultimate social, political and economic goals better than if it were to rely on what can often become an instable parliamentary system.

The main drawbacks with parliaments in diverse states include the possibilities of impasse and instability. A parliament elected by a pluralistic voting public might never exhibit a majority party. The resulting parliament might have trouble drafting legislation, and as party compositions change so might the Prime Minister. Moreover, unstable parliaments sometimes lead to coalitions that compromise the values and beliefs of constituents.

Nepal could succeed using a hybrid system. Rooted in clearly designated roles for chief executive legislator (Prime Minister) and head of state (President), the hybrid system would divide powers and demarcate the roles of diplomat vs. lawmaker. The chief executive, as the Prime Minister, can be voted out of office more easily than a stronger presidential head of state: by a vote of no confidence. A Prime Minister would also need to vote with more discipline and ascription to party platforms. Nepali voters are used to casting their ballots for parties whose general views they agree with; a parliamentary system ensures that legislation will follow party promises. However, voters can also elect a head of state (President) separate from their members of parliament to decrease corruption within the government. Nepal also needs to bolster its judicial branch to reduce the possibility for corruption and increase social justice. A hybrid system would minimize the potential for military coups because increased checks and balances leads to a limited potential for corruption.

Works Cited

CIA. “Nepal.” The World Factbook. July.


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