Tuesday, May 10, 2011
The many ways of serving your nation
The past few weeks have brought forth some rather unforeseen and in some cases, unwholesome sights to that sacred circumambulation the country was going to round up in holding the LG elections. While the show of aspirants ready to commit, participate and serve, in what is a primarily central process unique to the country, the overwhelming desire of the disqualified candidates in seeking a review of what they perceive to be wrongful misjudgment from the ECB, to no fault of their own, must find a solution.
The non-fulfillment of the required criteria and the subsequent disqualification has caused them a lot of distress. This was palpable when the Prime Minister voiced his concerns as party leader; he’d to address their grievances, as he did for the PDP members too, for he is the Bhutanese people’s Prime Minister. But he is politically affiliated, and the LG elections are distinct in that candidates who want to run must be non-political, and are able to prove that. We are a small country, and with that in mind, one must consider the fact that in the lead up to the 2008 general elections, everyone was politicized in some manner or the other. At the grassroots level, the capable lot naturally became active campaigners for their respective parties.
Since that successful milestone, over three years has passed. Given that time frame, it seems rather odd that the necessary requirements to legitimately stand for LG offices should surface now, at this critical juncture and more inconveniently, at the 11th hour. At this stage, finger pointing and tongue lashing will only hinder the process, rather than positively contributing, which is what all of us must do, for the grassroots is the foundation of the country.
This will probably cause more hurt, rather than healing those open wounds. The good thing is that the wounds are open, and as His Majesty stated, “we must always seek ways to sit together, face to face in the spirit of brotherhood and with unity of purpose, to resolve all issues.” In more ways than one, the last couple of weeks have been constructive learning experiences. Perhaps we can take inspiration in the fact that we now realize the importance of being and staying informed, in matters pertaining to laws and regulations.
The parties now know better. Nothing should be taken for granted, least of all as elected representatives or aspiring to become one. Information and communication is the order of the day, and no future political or apolitical aspirant should have to face such rejection based on ignorance of the electoral laws, and without a doubt, the Constitution - which every Bhutanese should try and read, for it’s the written word reflecting the altruistic consciousness of a nation. Hence, a noble gesture would be to offer help to the ECB and in doing that, half the work would be accomplished in harmoniously implementing the LG elections. Sometimes, in the interest of serving the greater good, personal sacrifices have to be made; reflecting the noble testimony to a person’s character.
Our Druk Gyalpos are living embodiments. Why can’t we follow in that selfless path? As His Majesty stated, “the desired outcome of our first Local Government elections as a democracy should be that our people in the 205 gewogs of our 20 dzongkhags have faith, confidence and pride in the representatives they have elected to office. This outcome can only be achieved if we are all faithful to the Constitution, the laws of our land and the will of our People.”
That is what we must strive to do.