KATHMANDU, May 8: Expressing serious concern over parliament’s move to drop the provision of suspending crime-accused Members of Parliament (MPs) from the parliamentary regulation, Transparency International Nepal (TIN) has urged the government to revise the regulation without further delay.

The anti-corruption watchdog has said that parliament’s failure to suspend crime-accused MPs is a mockery of the government’s

commitment to zero tolerance against corruption. “The failure to suspend crime-accused MPs is a blunder because the Corruption Prevention Act-2059 has a provision to suspend a public official once a corruption case is filed against him or her,” states a press statement issued by TIN President Shree Hari Aryal adding, “Corruption is also a form of crime. So the regulation contradicts the Act.”

TIN believes crimes will thrive in the coming days if parliament endorses the existing provision of not suspending the crime-accused MPs until the court convicts them of their crimes. The recently proposed regulation of federal parliament has a provision that the MPs will not get suspended even if crime cases are lodged against them at a court. “Criminalization of politics is a major
reason behind the thriving corruption in Nepal. Good governance can be maintained in the country only when people with integrity get the chance to run the country. MPs should stay prepared for that,” states the press statement.

Last week, lawmakers endorsed the provision of not suspending lawmakers even if they face criminal charges. Such MPs, according to the new parliamentary regulation, will remain in position
until the court convicts them of the crime they are accused of.

A lawmaker facing a criminal charge in a court of law will, however, not enjoy any state privilege, according to the regulation. Nor will he or she be allowed to use the logo of parliament once the charge-sheet is filed against him or her in a court.

The previous parliamentary regulation had a provision to suspend the lawmakers immediately after they were charge-sheeted at the court. Several lawmakers were suspended in the past for their involvement in crimes.

Source