Lawmakers put amendments on National Natural Resources and Fiscal Commission

August 11, 2017

Kathmandu : Lawmakers have registered the amendments on the bill related to Formation of National Natural Resources and Fiscal Commission saying the government was exercising to narrowing the constitutional provision while preparing the bill. 

The Article 250 of the Constitution reads: "There shall be a National Resources and Fiscal Commission of Nepal consisting of a maximum of five members including a chairperson." As per the constitutional provision, chairperson of the Commission will be appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Constitution Council. 

Similarly, Article 251 of the Constitution defines the duty of the commission as "the commission will determine detailed basis and modality for the distribution of revenues between the Federal, State and Local Level governments out of the federal consolidated fund in accordance with the Constitution and law." 

Speaking in the meeting of the Finance Committee under the Legislature-Parliament today, lawmakers suggested the government incorporate the suggestions given by them while finalizing the bill. 

Lawmakers vehemently objected the provision of distributing the revenues collected from the natural resources by 85, 10 and 5 per cent in Federal, Provincial and Local Level respectively. 

They have said that with this provision, there will be no actual decentralization to devolve the centralized rights to local levels. 

The committee President Prakash Jwala has also registered the amendment on the bill. The bill was registered in the Parliament Secretariat by erstwhile government. Now, the deliberation in principles on the bill has begun in the committee. 

The committee members Shakti Basnet, Ram Narayan Bidari, Shyam Kumar Shrestha, Janakraj Joshi, Hitraj Pandey have completed that the bill was against the spirit of the federalism and has narrowed the constitutional rights as well. 
They have further suggested putting the Commission under the Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers instead of Ministry of Finance. 

Likewise, lawmakers like Keshab Badal, Kedar Sanjel and Purushottam Poudel viewed that the issue of the fair distribution of natural resources and revenue between federal, provincial and local levels is a serious matter and that the government should focus on it. They said the main aspect of the constitution implementation is to form the commission, which they said should be inclusive and proportional. 

President of the committee Jwala stressed the need for an amendment to the Bill related to the distribution of natural resources and revenue between all the three levels. 

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Gyanendra Bahadur Karki said the Bill has not shrunk the scope of the provisions of the constitution. 

He also urged the legislation not to cast doubt on the fair distribution of natural resources and revenue between all the three levels while urging the passing of the Bill at the earliest. And towards the end, coordination between the levels is a must. RSS