Bhutan votes for a change in power

Thimphu, July 13 (IANS) Bhutan Saturday ushered in the main opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) to power in the second elections to the country's National Assembly since it became a democracy.

Jul 13 2013, 12:30pm CDT | by

Bhutan votes for a change in power
Photo Credit: ROBERTO SCHMIDT, Getty Images

Thimphu, July 13 — Bhutan Saturday ushered in the main opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) to power in the second elections to the country's National Assembly since it became a democracy.

The PDP stormed to power winning 32 of the 47 seats of the National Assembly or the lower house of Bhutan's parliament while Prime Minister Jigmi Thinley's Druk Phuensom Tshogpa (DPT) party could manage only 15, according to the Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB).

To gain power, the winning party needed 24 seats.

In the first elections to the National Assembly in 2008 after the country adopted democracy, the DPT had won 45 seats while the PDP had to be content with just two seats.

Voting Saturday started at 9 a.m. local time (8.30 a.m. IST) and ended around the scheduled time of 5 p.m. in what was a sunny day in the tiny picturesque nation of 750,000 people. Voter turnout was recorded at 70 percent, lower than the 80 percent in the last election in 2008.

Counting started in polling centres that were turned into counting centres immediately after the conclusion of voting.

After the first phase of the elections held May 31, in which four parties were in the fray, the DPT and the PDP had qualified for the second and final phase by virtue of their highest vote tallies.

This means that only one party can form the government and the other will remain in the opposition, ensuring that there is no coalition government in this Himalayan nation as it makes the transition from a monarchy into a democracy.

Elections for the 25 seats of the National Council or upper house were held April 23. While five members of the upper house were nominated by the king, the remaining 20 were elected from the country's 20 dzongkhags or administrative and judicial districts.

All the candidates in the 20 dzongkhags stood as independents as National Council members are not allowed to belong to any political party.

For Saturday's polling, India had provided Bhutan with nearly 2,000 EVMs and India's Chief Election Commissioner V.S. Sampath was invited to oversee the election process.

The results are seen as a defeat for outgoing Prime Minister Thinley's policies of opening up to China, a move that was seen with wariness and even suspicion by India that wields considerable influence over Thimphu's foreign and economic policies. Both parties subsequently agreed not to make India an election issue even though withdrawal of subsidy on kerosene and cooking gas by New Delhi adversely affected energy prices in the country and became a campaign point.

IANS

Source: IANS

 
 
 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/8" rel="author">Luigi Lugmayr</a>
Luigi is the founding Chief Editor of I4U News and brings over 15 years experience in the technology field to the ever evolving and exciting world of gadgets. He started I4U News back in 2000 and evolved it into vibrant technology magazine.
Luigi can be contacted directly at ml@i4u.com. Luigi posts regularly on LuigiMe.com about his experience running I4U.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

School headmaster shot dead in Pakistan
Islamabad, Dec 4 (IANS) Unidentified gunmen Thursday killed the headmaster of a private school in Pakistan's Balochistan province.
 
 
Four more bodies recovered from sunken South Korean ship
Seoul, Dec 4 (IANS) Four more bodies were recovered Thursday from a sunken South Korean fishing ship in the Bering Sea, the foreign ministry here said.
 
 
Lesbian couple asked to desist in London restaurant
London, Dec 4 (IANS) A lesbian couple in a London restaurant was asked to desist by a staff member, who asked them to "stop what you are doing".
 
 
Oxford Dictionaries to add 1,000 new words
London, Dec 4 (IANS) 'Mamil' (middle-aged man in Lycra), 'silvertail' (a person who is socially prominent or who displays social aspirations) and 'crony capitalism' are among the 1,000 new words to be added to OxfordDictionaries.com, the free online dictionary, in its largest quarterly update so far.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Australian researcher discovers first artwork by early human
Sydney, Dec 4 (IANS) An Australian researcher has discovered what is believed to be the first artwork created by a human. The simple zigzag pattern found on a fossilized shell from the Indonesian island of Java has...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Insects compete with rats to clear garbage
New York, Dec 4 (IANS) Insects play a very important role in cleaning up cities and they compete with other pests like rats and pigeons in their endeavour, a study has said. Scientists sampled arthropods - such as...
Read more on Business Balla
 
School headmaster shot dead in Pakistan
Islamabad, Dec 4 (IANS) Unidentified gunmen Thursday killed the headmaster of a private school in Pakistan's Balochistan province. Police officials said the armed men opened fire at the vehicle of Zahid Ali,...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Four more bodies recovered from sunken South Korean ship
Seoul, Dec 4 (IANS) Four more bodies were recovered Thursday from a sunken South Korean fishing ship in the Bering Sea, the foreign ministry here said. This increased the toll to 16, including six South Koreans and 10...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Lesbian couple asked to desist in London restaurant
London, Dec 4 (IANS) A lesbian couple in a London restaurant was asked to desist by a staff member, who asked them to "stop what you are doing". Lydia Cawson, 29, said that she and her girlfriend were asked by a staff...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Oxford Dictionaries to add 1,000 new words
London, Dec 4 (IANS) 'Mamil' (middle-aged man in Lycra), 'silvertail' (a person who is socially prominent or who displays social aspirations) and 'crony capitalism' are among the 1,000 new words to be added to...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Oceans play key role in global 'warming hiatus'
London, Dec 4 (IANS) Increased heat uptake across three oceans - North Atlantic, the Southern Ocean and Equatorial Pacific Ocean - is the likely cause of the 'warming hiatus' -- the current decade-long slowdown in...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Novel imaging to identify if TB drugs are working
Washington, Dec 4 (IANS) Tuberculosis patients who are not cured of the infection can develop multi-drug resistant TB and have to take as many as six drugs for two years. Now, researchers at University of Pittsburgh...
Read more on Business Balla
 
PM makes first appointment to High Court of Australia
Canberra, Dec 4 (IANS) Prime Minister Tony Abbott's government Thursday appointed former Victorian Supreme Court judge Geoffrey Nettle as the next Justice of the High Court of Australia. Attorney General George...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
18 suspected militants killed in Pakistan airstrikes
Islamabad, Dec 4 (IANS) At least 18 suspected militants were killed Thursday in airstrikes conducted by Pakistan Air Force fighter jets in North Waziristan. According to officials, the airstrikes were conducted in...
Read more on Politics Balla