Thinley Namgay

Punakha – The Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) sprung up the biggest surprise in the first National Assembly election in 2008 when its candidate, a former language teacher, outvoted the party president of the only competing party.

Fifteen years later, the party that has been elected to govern or oppose for three terms began  its official campaign from Punakha. The party president, Dorji Wangdi, said that the people know the DPT party, as he kicked off the campaign.

The president picked up on the issue of hydropower.  The Punakha-Wangdue valley boasts of the biggest hydropower projects- Punatsangchhu I and II. “In the tenure of the last two governments, no new hydropower project was started in the country. Whereas, the tenure of DPT witnessed five hydropower projects, which have contributed significantly to the economy.”

While reminding the voters of achievements during its tenure as the first democratically elected government, the president  pledged blacktopping and laying granular sub-base of roads, addressing the gungtong issue and chain-link fencing to contain predation of crops, market for farm produce besides pledging a rule through equity and justice if elected to govern for the second time.

What could appeal to rural voters, the president also pledged ensuring uninterrupted water for drinking and irrigation, improved services for rural development, including easing rules for building permits.

On national issues, the president pledged starting three new hydropower projects,  improved investment in tourism,  mines and minerals, building double-lane roads in all dzongkhags.

Dorji Wangdi thanked the people for their support for DPT for the 15 years. “I expect  similar support in the upcoming election.”

Except for a few comparisons to the past governments, Dorji Wangdi spent most of his time explaining the strategies of DPT to move the country forward.

He also informed the crowd that the DNT government could have maintained a commendable economic growth rate if the Covid-19 pandemic had not derailed the plans.

The president will meet the people of Gasa today.