The youngest democracy on earth, Bhutan, successfully held the election for the National Council one more time, Tuesday. The new Council has a tenure of five years.
Out of 379,819 registered voters 168,180 voters which is about 45.17 percent of the total Bhutanese electorates, turned-out to cast their votes for the NC election, the Election Commission informed.
Except six old faces, remaining elected members are exercising their powers in the country’s upper house for the first time. According to NC, the youngest member is 29 while the oldest is 49 years old.
People did not show interest in using their rights as expected, say some media reports. Inclement weather condition in the country is cited as one of the reasons for the low turn-out.
Majority of the 67 aspirants from different walks of life contesting for 20 seats were fresh graduates and youths. Five of them were women. No single woman could make through this election.
According to the Election Commission, there were 850 polling stations and 4,651 officials were deployed for the NC elections.
86 percent of voters cast their votes through Electronic Voting Machines (EVM), while 24,897 votes were cast through postal ballot.
It is too early to be assured of female appointees in the NC as the monarch has at least five quotas to appoint people of his choice hereafter.
At least two Lhotshampas, Dhan B Monger from Sarpang and Kamal B Gurung from Tsirang have reserved their seats in the NC.
NC is a apolitical body comprising of 25 members. Of them, 20 are directly elected from each of 20 districts, while five are the King’s appointees.
Pictures courtesy : Kuensel, BBS