The Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) has asked the two parties that went through the primary round of the third National Assembly elections, Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT) and Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT), to formally nominate one candidate each to contest the general elections in the 47 National Assembly Demkhongs staring from Monday.
The submission of nomination papers, which will be submitted by the nominated candidates to their respective Returning Officers, can be done beginning from Monday till Friday, and the scrutiny of nominations of candidates will accordingly start from September 22.
During the official declaration of the primary round elections’ result, the Chief Election Commissioner, Chogyal Dago Rigzin congratulated DNT and DPT for getting enough support from the electorate to go further to the general elections.
“The ECB submits its deep respect and appreciation to all the voters who turned up to vote and exercised their franchise,” he added.
The Chief Election Commissioner, on behalf of the ECB, also thanked the Bhutan Kuen-Nyam Party (BKP) and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for their full-hearted participation in the primary round.
“All four participating Political Parties campaigned with great enthusiasm and vigour to inform, communicate and interact with the public. The State support to election campaign, as provided under the Constitution and the Electoral Laws, ensured that the electorate had access to information on each Party’s ideology, campaign manifesto and witness for themselves the leadership qualities and dynamism of each of the Party’s leaders and Candidates designates,” he stated in an ECB press release yesterday.
Quoting His Majesty The King’s Command after the Local Government Elections 2016 – “In our Democracy, there is no winning or losing in an election. The most important thing is that all have stepped forward and participated in elections for the opportunity to serve the TsawaSum. This is a very good sign and I take it as a cause for reassurance and pride” – Chogyal Dago Rigzin urged all to keep in mind the words of wisdom of His Majesty.
Meanwhile, an ECB notification which was also released yesterday asked the BKP, DNT, DPT and PDP to file the returns of election expenses of the primary round to the concerned Dzongkhag Electoral Office or directly to the Public Election Fund Division within 30 days of declaration of the results of primary round of election, i.e. by October 16 in the prescribed form available with ECB.
Further, the notification also directed the DNT and DPT, contesting the general elections, to continue to report and submit weekly election expenses verified by respective observers.
“The campaign fund for general election shall be released as per schedule only upon fulfillment of the weekly reporting requirement. These two parties and candidates shall thereafter file the Election Returns separately for the Primary Round and General Election, as required under the laws, within 30 days of the declaration of General Election Results, i.e. by November 19,” states the ECB’s notification.
Staff Reporter from Thimphu