Nepal Today

Thursday, June 6, 2013

VICE-PRESIDENT ATTENDS KUNMING EXPO IN CHINA Kathmandu, 7 June: Vice-president Parmananda Jha Thursday participated in the China South-Asia Asia in the central China city of Kunming. Jha is on an official China visit and will hold talks with his counterpart in Beijing before flying back home 9 June. The vice-president held consultations with Chinese Vice-premier Ma Kai in Kunming on the sidelines of the expo. They discussed bilateral cooperation in trade, agriculture and tourism. nnnn MID-JULY CUTOFF DATE FOR ELIGIBLE VOTERS Kathmandu, 7 June: The Election Commission (EC) has set mid-July of this year as the cutoff date for eligible voting age for the upcoming Constituent Assembly (CA) election, Gani Ansari writes in Republica.. According to EC spokesman Bir Bahadur Rai, a meeting of the constitutional body held at its central office at Kantipath in the capital on Thursday decided that Nepali citizens who complete 18 years by mid-July this year will be eligible for voting in the upcoming election. The EC has also decided that eligible citizens can register themselves in the new electoral rolls with photograph and biometrics by July 15. The ECĀ“s decision came at a time when the Interim Election Council has been urging the major political parties to arrive at consensus on election-related ordinance so that the present government could announce the date for fresh CA polls. According to Section b of sub-clause 1 of Clause 5 of the Electoral Rolls Act, 2063, a Nepali citizen, who has completed the age of 18 years on or before the last day of the month of Chaitra (around 13 April) in the calendar year immediately preceding the year in which the Electoral Rolls were collected, will be eligible to vote. Those Nepali citizens who had completed 18 years of age on or before the last day of Mangsir of the year 2063 (Dec 15, 2006) were declared eligible voters in the CA election of 2008. However, as per the new provision, the EC will set a cutoff date for eligibility to register in the new electoral rolls. According to EC, 11.6 million voters have been registered in the new electoral rolls so far. The constitutional body had recently deployed mobile teams along with teams fielded by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) across 44 districts in order to register the new voters in the electoral rolls. MoHA had deployed its mobile teams to distribute citizenship certificates which are mandatory for new voters in order to be registered in new electoral rolls. Altogether 17.6 million voters were registered during the 2008 CA election. The EC is unable to make all preparations for new elections as the government has yet to approve the ordinance on amending the Election to Members of the Constituent Assembly (CA) Act, 2013. The government has failed to approve the ordinance as the major four political forces -- UCPN (Maoist), Nepali Congress (NC), CPN-UML and United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) -- remain sharply divided over the proposed eligibility threshold for CA seat allocations under proportional representation, downsizing the CA to 491 members from the previous 601 members, and candidatesĀ“ criminal background. Nnnn ICC GRANT TO PREPARE FOR WORRLD CUP Kathmandu, 6 June: International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced to provide a high performance grant to Nepal to make preparations for the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifiers, Binod Pandey writes in Republica.. As per the 2013 ICC Development Funding Policy, Nepal will receive $175,000. ICC will distribute the amount to its affiliate and associate member nations within rank nine to 12, while the top eight ranked affiliate and associate member nations will get $ 350,000. "We should invest this grant in the preparation for the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifiers," said Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) President Tanka Aangbuhang. The qualifiers is scheduled to be held in New Zealand in January 2014. Nepal became the 11th ranked affiliate and associate nation after winning the ICC World Cricket League Division 3 held in Bermuda last month. Winning the tournament, Nepal had secured promotion to Division 2. ICC has been providing $300,000 every year to Nepal in grant. Besides, Asian Cricket Council (ACC) provides $60,000 every year for office expenditure. ACC also provides additional financial support if it saves significant amount from Asia Cup. CAN President Aangbuhang said the high performance grant has given CAN a huge relief. "With this grant, we can at least plan a training program for our national side," said Aangbuhang. "Meanwhile, we are expecting support from the government and are preparing a detailed program for the World Cup Qualifiers," he added. According to Aangbuhang, CAN could use the grant also to send players for foreign training. "We are sending Binod Bhandari and Pradeep Airee to Sri Lanka to play club cricket there. Meanwhile, we are also planning some tours for the national squad to Sri Lanka or Bangladesh. We are also planning to call some foreign teams and experts here," said Aangbuhang. Bhandari and Airee will play for Kurunegala Youth Cricket Club in the Sri Lankan U-23 Club Cricket League. Last year, pacer Amrit Bhattarai and Chandra Sawad had played the league. Nepal could reach the World Cup if it finishes the World Cup Qualifiers on the top two positions. If Nepal finishes the qualifiers within top four, Nepal would get One-Day status. Nepal is also competing in the World T20 Qualifiers to be held in the UAE in November this year. The top six teams among the participating 16 teams of the T20 Qualifiers would reach to the World T20. Nnnn


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