DPT president: who said we’re fading away?

Puran Gurung/ Thimphu Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) is still very much in the reckoning as a political party, according to the party president and opposition leader Lyonpo Dorji Wangdi. The opposition leader was dispelling claims in certain quarters that the DPT’s stature and influence as a political party was diminishing now more than ever before ever since it burst onto the scene as a formidable political party during the first general elections in 2008. The DPT, he said, still has the largest membership among the political parties in the country, a figure that has been confirmed by the Election Commission of Bhutan. The party has, till date, 5,267 members. He pointed out that the party is also doing well because of its sizable base at the grassroots. “We have a very intact and growing community of party in-charge in all the constituencies, and that the fact that we have maintained constant touch with our local supporters is a sign of a strong political party.” One measure of the party’s success, he said, is that the DPT has been in the parliament for three consecutive terms. “If anyone is of the opinion that our performance and strength as a political party is dwindling, we wish to dispel it by saying that the DPT is the only party that has been in the parliament for three consecutive terms.” He also explained that the DPT has been a responsible opposition party focussing on issues concerning the national interest and discharging its constitutional rights responsibly, thereby setting a good precedent. The party has been setting high standards in doing its job as the opposition party. “We are doing what is appropriate as we have responsibility towards and accountability to the people of Bhutan.” The DPT, he said, is focusing on ‘larger, bigger and significant issues’. “Not all the actions of the government are correct but we are definitely doing our job,” he said. “As a responsible opposition, we need to focus on more pressing issues concerning governance; we need to set right precedence as the opposition.”