Dasho Neten Zangmo, the former Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Chairperson, is now the President of the Bhutan Kuen-Nyam Party (BKP), formally.

She was chosen by party members as President in May but was formally elected yesterday. She received 102 out of 104 votes that were cast to elect the party’s office bearers.

The founding President, Sonam Tobgay, was elected the Vice President. He was nominated by the President and received 104 votes from as many registered members who were present at the occasion.

Dorji Thinley  was elected as the General Secretary with 101 votes out of 104. The party’s former General Secretary, Karma Jimba was elected as Treasurer.

All elected office bearers were lone candidates.

Dasho Neten Zangmo said that two members voting against her signified that intra-party democracy was strong. “I wouldn’t have been as much satisfied if all 104 had voted “Yes” for me. We should vote without fear,” she said.

She thanked the members for their support for accepting her as the party president. She said that BKP will always strive for “beyond five years: beyond self” in the best interest of the nation.

Sonam Tobgay said the party was not formed to “enjoy a good time for five years” and disappear. “We are here to serve the country and the people beyond five years and beyond self interest,” he said.

Dasho Neten Zangmo said that after the completion of her tenure in ACC, she worked in her village in Samdrupjongkhar. “But I didn’t work in the village for political mileage,” she said.

She joined BKP earlier in May.  The newly elected office bearers took an oath of allegiance after their election yesterday in front of the party members and members of the press.

Vice President Sonam Tobgay said that the election ratified the presidency of Dasho Neten Zangmo although the party members had chosen her (without voting) in May this year.

Meanwhile, the former Royal Civil Service Commission (RCSC) commissioner Pirthiman Pradhan and former Deputy Governor of the Royal Monetary Authority (RMA), Pushpalal Chhetri, were also present at the meeting. While the former RCSC commissioner is registered as a member while the former RMA deputy governor is expected to register with the party soon.

However, they are yet to be introduced as candidates formally. According to party officials, they will stand as candidates from their respective constituencies. Pirthaman Pradhan belongs to the Ugyentse-Yoeseltse constituency of Samtse, while Pushpalal Chhetri is from Dagana’s Lhamoizingkha constituency.

Along with the election of the office bearers yesterday, the party’s dzongkhag office was also inaugurated at Taba, Thimphu.

Party officials said BKP would also organise meetings in other dzongkhags in a build up to the upcoming parliamentary elections. The party’s website and Facebook page were also launched.

BKP was registered in 2013.

MB Subba