Are we done defining the role of our Political Parties?

Whether there is State Funding or not, political parties can still continue to have grassroots presence. How we look at and decide to use this given, to the benefit of the Bhutanese, will need to be consolidated.

Through my interactions I know that some people feel that having political parties physically present amongst our communities increases the risk of friction (including with local governments, even looking at it as a duplicating parallel governance structure). Then could it mean that by limiting resources of political parties by making it dependent on members, was meant to limit their influence to reduce this friction?

Alternatively some interpret laws allowing political parties to have grassroots presence as a platform for grassroots participation in governance. Then does it not render it vital to allow the platform to continue providing it?

It will ultimately depend on how we as Bhutanese look at the role of political parties. Should they only be there for elections? Should political parties increase membership aggressively? If political parties need to collect fund by increasing membership, would that not increase politically divided communities? These and other related questions are some questions that we may have to face sooner or later to give our political parties a place in our governance set up.



About Sangay Khandu

Elected to Parliament of Bhutan twice. Previously worked with the Central Bank, the largest SoE (power utility) and international organization.
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