In the build-up to the third parliamentary elections, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) introduced seven more candidates last Thursday.
PDP officially announced former information and communications minister Nandalal Rai from Shompangkha constituency in Sarpang, who was a former candidate of DPT, as replacement for MP Rinzin Dorji in the 2018 elections after the latter submitted his resignation to the party voluntarily.
Meanwhile, Nandalal Rai served in the Royal Bhutan Army and resigned as a Major. He contested in Bhutan’s first parliamentary elections in 2008 and served as the information and communications minister in the first democratically elected government.
PDP also declared Sonam Tshering, former Gelephu Drungpa, as its candidate from Khar-Yurung constituency in Pemagatshel and the former principal of Yangchenphug Higher Secondary School, Dr. Karma Drukpa (PhD), as its candidate from Nanong-Shumar constituency in Pemagatshel.
Meanwhile, Sonam Tshering worked in the education sector for 19 years. He started his career as a teacher and then went to serve as the Principal, Dzongkhag Education Officer and Thromde Education Officer. He also served as the Dzongrab of Bumthang Dzongkhag for six years and as the Drungpa of Gelephu for three years. He has a masters’ degree in education from St FX University, Nova Scotia, Canada.
And the former Registrar of the Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences of Bhutan, Dr. Tashi Tobgay (PhD), was declared as PDP’s candidate from Bumdeling-Jamkhar constituency in Trashiyangtse. The candidate also served as the Director of KGUMSB for four years and as the Chief of Vector-borne Disease Control Program in Gelephu.
Dr. Tashi Tobgay (PhD) also worked as a Pharmacist and Chief Pharmacist at JDWNRH for 10 years. He is a PhD holder from Thammasat University, Thailand. He also has a masters’ degree in science from the University of South Australia, Australia.
The former Assistant Auditor General, Chandra Bdr. Gurung, from Lhamoi Dzingkha –Tashiding constituency in Dagana, is another new candidate of PDP, who will replace labor minister Ngeema Sangay Tshempo.
Chandra Bdr. Gurung has worked for 19 years with the Royal Audit Authority and has a masters’ degree in environmental management and development from Australian National University, Australia.
Similarly, Mani Pradhan from Ugyentse –Yoeseltse constituency in Samtse will be the new candidate to replace MP Madan Kumar Chhetri.
Mani Pradhan worked in the civil service for 17 years in different capacities before resigning to start his own business. Among many others, he was the Head, Computer Support Center under the erstwhile Planning Commission. He also headed the Urban GIS Unit under the erstwhile Ministry of Works and Housing. He has a masters’ degree in management information system from George Washington University, USA.
PDP’s current General Secretary, Sonam Jatso, has been announced as the party’s candidate from Gangzur-Minjey constituency in Lhuentse.
Sonam Jatso worked in the civil service and the private sector before joining politics. He served as the Head of Bilateral Aid Division, Ministry of Finance. He was the Founder and CEO of Rigney Business Consultancy. He served as the General Secretary of PDP from 2009 to 2011 and from 2013 to 2018.
Sonam Jatso has B.Com (Honours) from Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University, India.
Welcoming the new candidates to the party, party president Dasho Tshering Tobgay said all the candidates have served the Tsa-Wa-Sum well in various capacities and the party is thankful to them for further committing to serving the Tsa-Wa-Sum.
“It is very important for a political party to field credible, capable, and experienced candidates as choice for our people. PDP is confident that all the new candidates have the leadership qualities to fulfill the aspirations of His Majesty and the aspirations of our people,” he added.
Meanwhile, the next batch of candidates would be launched by the party next month. According to sources, the list includes two Dzongdags of Zhemgang and Trongsa, and also two Director Generals.
Chencho Dema from Thimphu