By Choekyi Lhamo
DHARAMSHALA, Aug 4: Four Tibetan NGOs based in Dharamshala on Wednesday appealed to all the stakeholders to resolve the ongoing parliamentary deadlock. The Tibetan Youth Congress, Tibetan Women’s Association, National Democratic Party of Tibet, and Students for a Free Tibet – India issued a three-point appeal letter for the immediate resolution of the ongoing impasse and for the proceedings of the 17th Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile to commence.
TYC President Gonpo Dhondup speaking on the behalf of the group urged the consideration of all the new MPs who have taken their oath of office either from the interim speaker or in front of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s portrait, so that the proceedings of the new house can begin from the September session.
Gonpo said that he is extremely concerned with the ongoing stalemate, “Disagreement in a community shows the strength of a democracy as practiced by governments across the world, however, ours is a unique form of exile government without a country, which has been bestowed on us by the Dalai Lama.” The spokesperson also voiced his concern about the dividing factions in the community due to ideological, regional and religious affiliations.
“If this ongoing row remains unresolved due to the ambiguities in the Charter of the Tibetan parliament, the CTA faces the unfortunate prospect of shutting down next year in March,” the joint statement read.
In addition, the NGOs also appealed for the formation of an independent committee to amend any ambiguities in the Charter, which many say is one of the key factor for the crisis. The joint statement by the groups, however, said that if the impasse is resolved, the lawmakers should then refrain from discussing any matter involving the 16th TPiE, resolution no. 39, Tibetan Supreme Justice Commission, and as well as the oath taking ceremony of the new MPs and the Sikyong, so that the issue is not dragged further.
The appointment of the new Speaker of the house as well as the Cabinet (Kashag) of the newly elected Sikyong has since been stalled due to the ongoing parliamentary crisis since June. The heads of the organizations said that they would reach out to the Tibetan Election Commission and the Kashag Secretariat today, and have also planned to individually meet with the elected members of the 17th TPiE.
The group said it will reveal to the press, the responses of the stakeholders including the newly elected MPs to their appeals shortly. The representatives also urged all Tibetans to shoulder responsibility for the unity of the community rather than creating discord by threatening the three pillars of the Tibetan democracy.