DRCN works to provide a critical, independent, and high-quality assessment of the elections, as well as recommendations for improving the electoral process as a part of its broader goal to strengthen democratic processes and institutions in Nepal.
One major feature of the new constitution promulgated on September 2015 was the restructuring of Nepal’s local government, including devolution of power to newly created provinces and local units. After much deliberations and contestations, the constitutionally mandated Local Level Restructuring Commission finalized 743 local units. On February 20, 2017, the Government of Nepal announced the local elections for May 14, 2017 which was later broken into three phases due to political reasons. The first phase elections in provinces without Tarai districts (Provinces 3, 4 and 6) were held on May 14, second phase elections in rest of the provinces except province 2 was held on June 28. The province 2 election across eight Tarai districts was held on September 18. Democracy Resource Center Nepal (DRCN) observed all three phases of the local elections conducted for the first time in nearly twenty years, and the first one under the new constitution and new local structures.
On September 18, 2017 the third and final phase of local elections was held in Province 2 consisting of eight Tarai districts. Voters in newly formed local units turned out in impressive numbers to elect new representatives. Democracy Resource Center Nepal (DRCN) conducted long-term and short-term observation of these elections to provide a critical and independent assessment of the electoral and political processes around the elections. This preliminary statement outlines findings and makes recommendations based on DRCN’s observation before, during, and after the third phase of local elections.
On June 28, 2017 the Second Phase of local elections was held in Provinces 1, 5, and 7. Voters in newly formed local units turned out in impressive numbers to elect new representatives for the first time in nearly 20 years. Democracy Resource Center Nepal (DRCN) conducted observation of the elections in order to provide a critical, independent, and high-quality assessment of the electoral and political processes around the elections. This preliminary statement outlines findings and makes recommendations based on DRCN‟s observation before, during, and after the Second Phase elections.
This preliminary statement outlines findings from DRCN’s observation of the local political and elections-related dynamics before, during and after the first phase of local elections on May 14, 2017. DRCN will release its second preliminary report immediately after the completion of the second phase of elections, followed by a final comprehensive report.
This pre-election statement focuses on a few key findings identified by observers since May 1. A more comprehensive preliminary statement of observer findings will be released after the elections, and a final observation report will be released at the completion of observation.