October 8, 2007

Full Proportional Representatio (FPR) in CA election

The issue of FPR (full proportional representation) in the election went so impregnable that it brought indefinite postpone of the proposed nov'07 CA election. Less is clear and much is to find out what actually this FPR is, how it operates, and how it assures advantage (and disadvantage) to various interest groups.

For now, general understanding is that FPR would shatter Congress' dream to occupy a clear majority in CA. Congress has approx. 35-40% vote share, enought for its marginally winning candidates in a direct election, which would bring a landslide victory in the election. The same vote bank could have been divided into aprox 25% and 20% between its earlier two factions resulting heavy loss. Hence it would pay for the unification of splitted Congress at the cost of some internal party-rebells. UML has approx 30-35% vote share, which was dreaming to have comfortable win through direct election keeping the Congress divided, but it is not sure of the result after Congress is united. Maoist is believed to have 15-20% vote share, which needs tactful election campaign to win needed number of seats. Otherwise it may face a huge loss in the direct election.

Earlier, Girija Congress and Maoist favoured direct election. Deuba Congress and UML were talking about FPR. UML, by its timid nature, wants to avoid risk, so, it was for FPR system since the very beginning, but they were unable to convince others in this issue and ended up in a note of dissent to keep self-esteem.

When Maoist was against FPR, I was thinking either Maoist might have estimated their support base wrongly, or they are not serious on the election. Few days ago, Sahana Pradhan told, in a program at DC, that Maoist told they were not aware of advantage of FPR system when they were supporting Congress and were bullying UML against their "note of dissent". Maoist want to correct that mistake and want to have FPR at any cost. But UML played just a soft ball again. They supported FPR but they didn't go for direct confrontation with Congress on this issue.

The political environment went so bad for Maoist these days. I feel, even Prachanda will not get a seat in the CA election if he has to win a direct election. We can see how Bamdev Gautam lost his election from his own constituency. No one from the maoist party, who could play vital role in elected CA, could actually get elected. Except Krishna Mahara, none of maoist leaders do have a strong hold in their home contituional region, be it Baburam Bhattarai, or Dev Gurung, or Ananta or Baadal or Pasang, forget about Hisila, Pampha bhusal, kiran, et al. So, to keep them politically alive, they MUST rely on FPR not in direct election.

If votes are to divide as 40% (Congress) 30%(UML) and 20%(Maoist) etc, then under FPR system these parties will get 192, 144 and 96 seats out of 480 seats in CA. Party leaders will be very powerful within their party. There will be very tough competition to snatch powerful positions in party. Party leaders will be able to have a lot of YES MANS so that s/he could get nominated.

The above discussion is common understanding among most people. However I am not sure in following issues yet.

A. how can an independent candidate get elected in FPR system? If a citizen wants to appear in the election, but he does not have any party, then should he go and create a party first? Can he be there as an individual candidate or not?

B. Does a party require to submit its candidates before the voting begins or after the vote counting ends? Some people say, a closed list of candidates should be submitted to election commission (EC) before the voting process begins. Afterward, the EC declares winning candidates from the list picking up the name listed in higher rank. If so, does a party require to publish its hierarchy or rank before the election?

C. Is is possible to assure full proportional representation in the hierarchy system, where people from particular class or cast are dominant in all parties. Otherwise how can we attain full proportional representation from the parties having huge biassed domination?

D. Is it mandatory for parties to keep proportional representation from demographic statistics to assure equal right of each community, region, gender, religion, and so on?

If so, lets think how congress should pick up its 192 CA members for assuring FPR. they should be
1. 98 from hill (himal and pahad) and 94 from terai
2. approx 38 from eastern, central, mid western, western and far west development region
3. approx 23 brahman, 32 Chhettris 10 newars, 55 madheshi, 40 janjati etc.
4. apporx 130 hindu, 30 budhdhist, 14 muslims, etc.
5. 96 male, 96 female
6. The above crieteria should also consider the party seniority, favorite of the party president and people from his faction in his party
is not it too confusing and complex?

Now, with this all complexities and confusions, how the FPR election will ensure a smooth and successful transition in Nepal?


Anonymous said...

Very nice analysis Chanaa bro. Infact I didn't even know what this FPR was and I am glad you made me clear.

The question you asked about individual candidate who wants to try his luck in CA election will not get any chance in FPR.

A very nice write.

Great! Thanks!!

nepalean said...

सुरुमा त म ब्लग क्लिक गर्दा अर्कै ब्लगमा पुगेकी जस्तो लाग्यो । चना ब्रो, पहिलो ब्लग इन्ट्रीको लागी धेरै धेरै धन्यबाद तथा बधाइ । अरु दौतरीहरुले पनि ब्लगमा इटा थप्दै जानुहुन अनुरोध गर्दछु । सबै मिलेर ब्लगलाइ परिस्क्रित गर्दै लानु पर्छ । ब्लग लेख्न इन्भाइट गर्दा त पर्शनल ब्लगपो भन्ने रहेछ । हामी कुरा के बुझौ भने त्यो पर्शन भनेको दौतरी हो ।
अब कुरो चनाको , FPR को कुरो ठाउमै टिपे चनाले । मलाइ त के लाग्छ भने, न दिने बजै बुधबार बार्छिन, पोइल जानी बजै नक्कल मात्रै पार्छिन । यो संबिधान सभाको चुनाब नहुने चाला हो । अहिले शेर बहादुरलाइ असक्षम भनेको झलझली याद आउछ ।

ठरकि दादा said...

साँच्चै नै एकदम informative लेख । मलाई थाहा छ यो यौटा लेख लेख्न पक्कै पनि निक्कै मेहनत परेको छ तपाईको। Hope to get more from you!

ठरकी दादा

Anonymous said...

All in All good article.
But i do not think Maoist have 15-20% of votes.Anyways if incase they are able to go for FPR then we will be seeing the same thing as before buying and selling of MPs .No Majority in the transitional period will lead to instability.

Keep writing.Good Start.Good luck

Anonymous said...

too many type and grammar mistakes, hope you've applied auto corection from urself.

nepalean said...

chana bro, it doesnt have auto correction. It may have, I dont know but I havent done that. Aba auto correction bhaneko afai correction ho. I guess you can login and edit again. If not please let me know, I will help you.

Anonymous said...

I mean, please read it correcting yourself.

बरु शुरुको ३-४ लाइन डिस्प्ले हुने र more अथवा read full क्लिक गरेपछि सबै डिस्प्ले हुने गर्न मिले हुन्थ्यो । कसरी गर्ने ?

nepalean said...

सहि हुन्थ्यो चना ब्रो, तर तेसो गर्न तरीका मलाइ थाहा छैन । कुनै दौतारीलाइ आउथ्यो कि त्यो तरिका ?

प्रज्वल said...

Channa Bro,

thanks for the insight, I had no idea what FPR was. I am still pondering over the point you made, how can an independent candidate get elected in FPR election, and I can't think of any answer. May be someone will clarify it more.

To sum it up, good post :)

Anonymous said...

Wonderful write up. But don’t you think, you are being so kind to allocate 20% votes to the Maoists friends?

I think, 100% proportional system and 100% direct election system, both are not good for the country and people. We need some kind of mixed election system. Fifty-fifty or 60-40 or 40-60.

To my understanding, in FPR system, people vote the parties they support or believe in, but they don’t know which particular person is going to represent them in the house. On the basis of the share of votes the party has garnered, party leadership will select their representatives in the house or assembly or provide the list of candidates in the sealed envelope as Chana mentioned above. And those lucky ones to be selected or to be enclosed in the sealed envelope would be mostly the rich, powerful sycophants who have easy access to the leadership. People would vote on the basis of the principles and the programs of a party but any faces like Govinda, Khum Bahadur and Chiranjeevis can pop up in the scene in their best tailored daura suruwal? However, in a direct election, people would get at least some chance to reject these stinking faces.

Some parties are in favor of FPR and some are against but none of them are guided by the interests of the people and the country. FPR will be magic spell for some party to become a prominent party in the house and the same would diminish the size of the others. This is why they are all beating the drums in their own notes.

However, absolute direct election system also doesn’t represent the 100% voice of the people. For example, UML split ML party of Bamdev and CP had garnered 6% votes but didn’t have a single representation in the house. Do the 6% people have no right to be heard in the house?

So, we have to say no to both the direct electoral system and the full proportional system but we have to follow the middle way-the mixed system. What do you say friends?

Once in a while
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Chanaa said...

I can't defend if 15-20% vote share actually belongs to maoist or not. It is just a belief and more prominently, my own belief I had in my mind before madhesh riot. People believe that maoist has lost their vote share in recent days, however, I have not revised my thoughts yet. Looking the indication of recent results of NEA election, in which maoist affiliated engineers took about 14% votes, I certainly believe, maoist will get 15-20% votes because they have greater influence in remote areas and under-educated mass than among the mass of licensed engineers.

Just now, I got an idea of negative voting. Instead of FPR or direct election, shall we exercise direct elimination method? For this, we have to have two stage election. First stage should be direct election that short list 3 most popular candidates among all. People with no public support will be filtered out but a few stinging faces like Khumbahadur and Govindaraj will get chance to be there.

Then, the next stage be the direct elimination voting. In this round, we vote a candidate who we don't like to win. The winner will be the one who gets the least vote, because he is liked by the most. :P

Anonymous said...

yeso kura bujhda kheri chahin malai FPR nai thik lagyo hai.......
kina bhane janta le haleko vote khera jadaina ni ta................
baru yo party haru le election ma janu bhanda pahila nai election jite pachhi aafule select garne neta haru ko list banayera public lai dekhaune (that way they will be forced to keep the better leaders in the list)...............

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