A National Order of Merit (Silver) recipient to contest for NC

Former forester Gyem Dorji, 42, will contest in the upcoming National Council (NC) elections from Rephey village under Drakten gewog in Trongsa.

Gyem Dorji is the only candidate from his gewog and is a recipient of the prestigious excellence in service award-National Order of Merit Silver from His Majesty The King during the 110th National Day at Haa.

He served for more than 20 years as Dzongkhag Forestry Officer before resigning from the head office, Department of Forests and Park Services heading the plantation section under Social Forestry and Extension Division to contest in the council elections.

Gyem Dorji started his career as a Park Ranger and served for more than nine years in the Royal Manas National Park.

“I am very proud to have served during a crucial time from 1997-2005 when our country was passing through a difficult security situation in the southern part,” he said.

Gyem Dorji survived a bullet injury on his left arm from the ambush plotted by militants while he was leading a team of foresters along the Indo-Bhutan border toward the park areas when the security was tense in Southern Bhutan.

He has a double Masters of Science in Environmental Technology for Sustainable Development from UNESCO-IHE, Netherland and Environmental Engineering from Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand. He graduated in Diploma in Environmental Science and Heritage Management from Charles Sturt University, Australia.

He was also actively involved in development and construction of hydropower projects such as Mangdechhu and Nikachhu.

He wants to contest for the council elections because of his desire to strengthen democracy and serve the nation. He also said that his friends, elders and community have constantly reminded him to represent them at the highest level.

Working as an apolitical civil servant for more than two decades in government service has equipped him with knowledge to frame laws, according to Gyem Dorji.

“I feel that I can be an appropriate person to represent my people having understood ground realities and challenges faced by our people,” he said.

He also wants to act proactively as check and balance to the government in the interest of the country, people and monarch. “I will be an agent to link and communicate between the community, gewog, dzongkhag and ministry to speed up the lawmaking processes for people at the grassroots.”

He said that having worked in Trongsa for more than five years has made him aware of the challenges and socioeconomic conditions of the gewogs under Trongsa. Knowing every nook and corner of the dzongkhag and working closely with the villagers is his strength.

Supporting community through sustainable management of natural resources available within the vicinity is one of his passions.

Dechen Dolkar from Thimphu