Chief justice takes oath as Nepal PM, to oversee polls

KATHMANDU (TIP): Following weeks of negotiations, Nepal’s chief justice Khil Raj Regmi was Thursday sworn in as the new head of government, the msain task of which will be to hold general elections by June 21.

The main political parties reached an agreement late on Wednesday on the 63- year-old Regmi to be the chairman of the council of ministers, since he was seen as a neutral candidate to hold elections. He will hold a small cabinet of 11 members. The parties have agreed to have former bureaucrats as ministers.

According to the amendment of the constitution, Regmi will not be performing his duties as the chief justice while he is the chairman of the council of ministers but will go back to the judiciary after elections. There has been widespread opposition to the appointment the chief justice as head of government from smaller political parties and the civil society. While President Ram Baran Yadav was swearing in Regmi, there were protest rallies outside.

Opposing parties contend that making the chief justice as the head of government is against the principle of the separation of the judiciary and the executive. The country has been facing political uncertainty since May after the parliament was dissolved.

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