The incumbent thrompon will also be re-contesting
LG: Although Dechen Wangmo, 36, lost the last thrompon election, her confidence was not lost.
She has decided to re-contest in the upcoming thromde election.
But more than the winning, Dechen Wangmo believes participating is important. And being a woman, she also wants to set an example for other women who lack confidence; to show that women are as capable as men.
The mother of two who runs a private school and nursery in Samdrupjongkhar is a resident of Bar constituency (Samdrupjongkhar throm).
Dechen said that when the government is doing much to empower women, it is the responsibility of women to take the opportunity and try.
“I am not bothered about winning or losing but people should know about choosing the right one,” she said. “A few people discouraged me but I am not giving up,” she added. “Even if I lose, I would have tried.”
She said this was one way to serve the nation and the place she resides in because there are still more developments to be done for the thromde.
“Samdrupjongkhar is an important thromde for the eastern region and to develop the east we need to first develop Samdrupjongkhar thromde,” she said. “It is not about which thrompon will bring what developments but it is about how smartly, planned activities are implemented based on the present situation that needs to be addressed first.”
Access to proper drinking water, ending the housing crunch, town beautification and proper sanitation are some of her top priorities.
“If I win I want to show that even a woman can also implement activities and I know I can. We just need ideas and as the saying goes: Women are better at implementation.”
A graduate in political science, she said, people should give women a chance to prove themselves because during the previous election many felt a man in the position would be better.
“For me women empowerment is very important and I want to represent on behalf of other women. But when I say this I am not saying men cannot do anything, but it’s time people give opportunities to women, too.”
With the election postponed, Dechen Wangmo is looking after her two schools apart from interacting with people who encourage her to re-contest.
It is a different story for 43-year old Sangay Tenzin who will soon resign as a municipal engineer of the Paro municipality to contest for the post of thrompon.
Sangay Tenzin from Samdrupgatshel constituency, who was in service for the last 20 years said that his 15 years of experience as part of a municipality was something that he can make use of for the betterment of Samdrupjongkhar thromde.
Having a Masters in engineering science from Australia, he said, it would be easier to serve based on his knowledge and experience since most of the thromde’s developmental activities are technical.
“I wasn’t sure that I would contest but when I visited my village for losar, many shared with me that there was a need for someone who has a better idea on the thromde and its development,” he said, adding he had ample experience on implementation of plans, thromde rules and regulations, and that he decided to take the risk and resign from the job.
Sangay Tenzin, a father of two said although, winning is not important, what’s lacking today is poor voter turnout which affects the choosing of the best candidate.
“We should know what the public wants and the thrompon should benefit people as a whole,” he said. “My strategy is to think out of the box because at present many thromdes work based on limited budget, but we should work on how to go beyond approved budget to implement developments.”
Sangay Tenzin added he has been projecting urban budgets so far, which is why he has an idea on where or how to approach for budget which could help in bringing significant change without having to depend only on the approved budget.
Like many others, he said, access to 24-hours drinking water, sanitation, waste management and drainage are some of the activities that need permanent solutions for which proper planning is important.
“Many do show support and encourage me but we’ll know only on the poll day. It was a joint decision with family and people to resign and contest.”
With six constituencies, Samdrupjongkhar thromde has 392 male and 415 female registered voters. Voter registration will go on until July.
Yangchen C Rinzin | Samdrupjongkhar