Prime Minister Prachanda resigns
by Christopher Sharma

Announced yesterday in a televised speech. He says he wants to respect agreements with the Nepalese Congress. Some believe that this change could "confuse" politics in Nepal.

Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - Nepalese Prime Minister "Prachanda" Pushpa Kamal Dahal announced his resignation with a speech aired from his office yesterday afternoon. The reason for his resignation was given as out of respect for a power-sharing agreement signed with the main coalition partner, the Nepalese Congress. Some are now wondering whether the timing could endanger the second phase of elections scheduled for June 14.

Prachanda, accused in the past of war crimes committed during the civil conflict (1995-2006), has served as prime minister since last August with the support of the Nepalese Congress.

Prachanda reported that the leadership of the next government will be entrusted to the chairman of the Nepalese Congress Sher Bahadur Deuba. Until the process is completed, the outgoing Prime Minister will continue to perform his duties.

Recalling the good results of his government, Prachanda said he wanted to stop "the decadence of morality in Nepalese politics, where written agreements remain incomplete."

The new government, the 25th in 27 years, will be responsible for completing the second phase of local elections, which should anticipate national elections to be held by the end of the year. The choice of the new leader may take a few days, considering no party in the parliament has the absolute majority.

According to some, this could endanger local elections. Hari Sharma, formerly president and political analyst advisor, comments: "Undoubtedly his is following the political agreement, but the moment when he decided to do so casts doubts on the next phase of local elections. This confuses people and the political course in Nepal."

For his part, Prachanda has stated that he wants to "continue to be active in raising the country and the people as a politician, parliamentarian and citizen" and that his "efforts for unity and consensus will continue".