When it comes to parliamentary elections, Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) can bank on Pemagatshel for votes. Pemagatshel gave the country its first elected prime minister and since 2008, the party has been enjoying landslide victory in the dzongkhag.
In the recent primary round, DPT won a total of 10,682 votes against DNT’s 4,350, People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) 1,772, Bhutan Kuen-Nyam Party’s (BKP) 1,098 votes in the dzongkhag.
Norbu Dema, 33, from Norbugang gewog in Nganglam drungkhag, said DPT won in all three constituencies in the dzongkhag consistently since 2008 because people have benefited by the developments brought during their tenure.
She said that they could now travel everywhere easily because DPT constructed several farm roads that were interlinked with another villages in the dzongkhag. “The former government has also brought developments in the dzongkhag during their term but we have never seen developments like we saw during DPT’s tenure,” Norbu Dema said.
A 52-year old resident, said people choose and vote for those parties who benefit the people.
DPT’s dzongkhag coordinator, Sangay Phuntsho, said people like the party’s ideology of serving the people and the country through equity and justice. “People know that which government brought what kinds of developments in the dzongkhag and that could be the reason why the people of Pemagatshel support DPT,” he said.
DNT’s coordinator, Dorji, said that it’s good that DNT secured second highest votes and that could be because of the party’s manifesto.
PDP’s coordinator, Sonam said the party did not get much time for campaign and it started campaigning only after dissolving the government. “People of Pemagatshel have been strong supporters of DPT while DNT has been campaigning for almost more than a year and that could be the reason why PDP secured less votes here.”
He said that people only think about the developments brought by DPT. “We still see opportunities in future but for that, we need to sensitise the people.”
BKP’s coordinator, Sergi Jamtsho, said BKP secured less votes in the dzongkhag because the party is new and contesting for the first time. “But it will be difficult to contest in the dzongkhag even if other parties are more stronger than DPT,” he said. That the two-time National Council member Jigme Rinzin who contested for BKP from Nanong-Shumar constituency lost indicates that even if the candidate is familiar, the people still chose DPT.
Of the 26,141 eligible voters registered in the dzongkhag, 17,902 voted on September 15 giving a voter turnout of about 68.48 percent.