It’s an interesting moment in time for Nepal. In 17 cities large and small, 246 municipalities and 481 rural municipalities, local elections are taking place for the first time in 20 years.
There have been a few false starts over the years, including an attempt at local elections within 53 municipalities in 2006, which resulted in low voter turnout and was boycotted by many of the major political parties at the time.
The first phase of voting began on May 14th and was estimated to have a voter turnout of nearly 71%. Arriving to Nepal on the May 14th, it was hard not to feel the political enthusiasm in the air. Regardless of preferred party, we found people young and old to be eager to show their political support/preferences.