Office Pool Nepal – 2065

78

Optimism finished last during most of 2064, but elections and a new year are now less than a month away. Take the plunge into the office pool and make your predictions for Nepal in BS 2065.

Choose one answer, multiple answers, or none.

1) The Constituent Assembly elections will be

A. Mostly free and fair in most constituencies

B. Held on time, but with serious problems

C. Held, but a complete farce

D. The moment when the Maoists seize control

E. Postponed again

2) Which party or electoral block will hold the most seats in the CA? Which will be second?

A. Maoists

B. NC

C. Madesh ethnicities

D. UML

E. Royalists

3) The NC will collect

A. Less than 10% of the CA seats

B. 10-20% of the CA seats

C. 20-33% of the CA seats

D. More than one-third of the CA seats

E. Fewer seats than Royalists

4) The Maoists will collect

A. Less than 10% of the CA seats

B. 10-20% of the CA seats

C. 20-33% of the CA seats

D. More than one-third of the CA seats

E. Fewer seats than Royalist parties

5) The UML will collect

A. Less than 10% of the CA seats

B. 10-20% of the CA seats

C. 20-33% of the CA seats

D. More than one-third of the CA seats

E. Fewer seats than Royalist parties

6) What will be the biggest electoral surprise?

A. The strong showing of the Royalist parties

B. How poorly the NC fares

C. The big difference in FPTP and proportional results

7) After the CA elections the Maoists will

A. Fully respect the election results

B. Return to armed conflict

C. Launch street protests to declare the results “meaningless”

D. Get a special extra allocation of CA delegates from an intimidated parliament

E. Withdraw from the government but participate in the CA

8) Prime Minister Koirala’s announced resignation after the CA elections:

A. Will never happen

B. Will leave the Koirala block out in the cold

C. Will rejuvenate the party

D. Will leave the country in deep trouble

9) The first meeting of the CA will

A. Abolish the monarchy outright

B. Vote in favor of a ceremonial king

C. Give itself an extra 100 days to decide

10) Early in 2065, the current parliament will

A. Assign itself permanent tenure until the new constitution is ratified

B. Dissolve itself and constitute a new body based on the CA results

C. Hand over governance to the CA

D. Spend months arguing the issue, while development languishes

11) The CA will complete it’s work and present a constitution for ratification in

A. 2065

B. 2066

C. 2067

D. Never

12) Are India and the US actively working behind the scenes to save the monarchy?

A. Absolutely: a republican Nepal would be uncomfortably independent

B. Yes, they just can’t stop meddling

C. No, it merely looks that way because they are so strongly anti-Maoist

D. No, that’s just paranoia

13) In 2065, the economy will

A. Grow more than 5%

B. Grow a little

C. Stagnate

D. Decline a little

E. Decline a lot

14) In 2065, tourism will

A. Grow handsomely

B. Do OK

C. Decline badly because of domestic political problems

15) Petrol and gas cylinder prices 12 months from now will be

A. Rs 130 / Rs 1,825

B. Rs 100 / Rs 1,300

C. Rs 70 / Rs 1,000

D. Rs 55 / Rs 800

16) The US Dollar exchange rate 12 months from now will be

A. 50

B. 65

C. 70

D. 75

17) The number of prominent public figures who will be convicted of corruption in 2065 is

A. More than ten

B. A few

C. Zero

Put the poll and your answers away for a year and then see how you and I did. My picks are:

1) A, 2) D & C, 3) A & E, 4) B, 5) D, 6) all, 7) C, D & E, 8) none, 9) C, 10) D, 11) C, 12) C, 13) C, 14) A, 15) B, 16) B, 17) C

A tip of the hat to William Safire’s 34 years of entertaining Office Pool pieces on the Op-Ed page of the New York Times.

John Child is The NewsBlaze Nepal Correspondent, a journalist in Kathmandu who writes about goings-on in and around Nepal and her neighbors.

John Child is The NewsBlaze Nepal Correspondent, a journalist in Kathmandu who writes about goings-on in and around Nepal and her neighbors.