Nepal Home Ministry to remain under jurisdiction of PM Dahal after Lamichhane's resignation
Jan 28, 2023
Kathmandu [Nepal], January 28 : The Nepal Home Ministry will remain under the jurisdiction of Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal after the resignation of Rabi Lamichhane following Supreme Court's verdict to sack him, said a statement from the President Office.
Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari's decision comes after the country's home minister on January 27 tendered his resignation to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal aka Prachanda after the Supreme Court's decision.
In the statement, Nepal's President said that Lamichanne has resigned from the minister post in accordance with Clause (a) of Article 77 of the Constitution of Nepal and Nepal PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal has been asked to take over.
Nepal's Supreme Court on Friday disqualified Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Rabi Lamichhane from his posts after he was found guilty of producing an 'invalid' citizenship certificate to contest the recent general elections. After the verdict of the apex court, Nepal's Home Minister submitted his resignation to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal.
The verdict was announced by a Constitutional Bench of the Nepal SC headed by Acting Chief Justice Hari Krishna Karki. The other Justices on the bench were Justice Bishowambhar Prasad Shrestha, Ishwar Khatiwada, Ananda Mohan Bhattarai and Anil Sinha.
"As Rabi Lamichhane has not completed the process for reacquiring his Nepali citizenship after renouncing his American citizenship, he cannot be a candidate for the position of a member of the House of Representatives or be elected to that position," read the Supreme Court verdict on Friday."
After giving up the US citizenship, Lamichhane was not found adhering to the legal process to acquire Nepali citizenship again. So, he did not deserve to be the candidate of the member of the House of Representatives nor could hold the lawmaker's post," the Bench ruled further.
The Nepal Court further said, "With this, a certiorari order is issued as per Article 133 (b and c) and Article 137 of the Constitution of Nepal by scrapping all activities making Lamichhane an election candidate, announcing his election victory, and conferring him the certificate."
Speaking to reporters on Friday evening while walking out of the Ministry of Home Affairs, post the Supreme Court verdict, Lamichhane said, "As a noncitizen, I have nothing left to say." However, he said he welcomes the decision of the country's apex court." I welcome and accept the SC's decision," he said.
He said he had absolutely no idea what his status and the future move would be. He also added that he no longer was the Chairman of the Rastriya Swatantra Party. A television personality-turned-politician, Lamichhane was declared stateless as he does not have any official documents to attest to his nationality.
After the verdict, Lamichhane also lost his post of chairman of the Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP), along with that of the Deputy Prime Minister, Home minister and a lawmaker. Lamichhane was appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister on December 25 last year.
While pronouncing the verdict on Friday, the SC said Lamichhane can reacquire citizenship by following due process, which requires filling out an application before the District Administration Office.
On December 14, advocates Yubaraj Poudel and Rabiraj Basaula filed a writ petition with the Supreme Court arguing that Lamichhane cannot remain a member of parliament as he does not have Nepalese citizenship. The petitioners demanded that Lamichhane be removed from the post of party chief.
They petitioners said that only Nepalese citizens have a constitutional right to vote in the elections, become candidates or launch a political party in the country. The petitioners further contended that Lamichhane's posts as a member of the lower House of the parliament and the party president were illegal.