BTT for a New Bhutan

President of BTT says people will and should make the right choice

‘Tendrel’ is a universal law that will remain relevant through posterity. It means that in our daily lives, if we cultivate good causes and create good conditions, we can achieve good results without doubt. Bhutan Tendrel Tshogpa (BTT) heralds the beginning of a new era, a new dawn, a brave new Bhutan, and as a political party to remain right at the center working towards a better, greater and prosperous Bhutan.

“We stand for a good cause with positive intentions to consecrate a new Bhutan,” BTT President Dasho Pema Chewang said.  The former National Land Commission secretary, who formed the party said that his aspirations from politics is for the benefit of everyone. “Having a stable and respectable job isn’t enough with the reality of a rapidly changing world. We cannot stay painting a rosy picture of ourselves, while the ground reality is completely different,” Dasho said, adding Bhutan is still talking about economic self-reliance while the rest of the world has moved on rapidly.

Expressing confidence, he said, “I am confident that I can do much more as a politician.”  “I believe in myself, in my age, experience and my strengths to contribute to the nation. We are all deeply concerned about the future of our nation and I want to do something about it to bring about the much-needed change,” Dasho said. He added that Bhutan Tendrel Tshogpa (BTT) will offer more choice to the people and bring about the much-needed change.

Dasho also said that ultimately it is the decision of the people. “But the people also need to know about the parties so that they can make an informed decision,” he said. Dasho added that the party is ready to talk with any one with issues.

The party held their first pre-registration convention in Thimphu earlier this week, and submitted its application for registration to the Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) on November 30, 2022.

Asked if more political parties are required in a small democratic nation like Bhutan, Dasho said one has to look into the way where democracy is now. “It’s all about people’s choices, to give more choice to the people though some may think that it’s too many for a small nation.”

The new party will create a level of playing field and make thorough use to gain publicity and understand the issues on the ground once ECB grant registration in an introductory tour.

“Bhutan is at the cusp of change, there is no looking back. It is time for a radical, real, and absolute transformation backed by sound knowledge. We must achieve this change by cultivating good causes and creating good conditions,” Dasho said.

Meanwhile, the party is not only looking for candidates who are capable but humble and especially those who can empathize and work closely with the common people. It has been receiving a number of interested candidates but the party is careful in choosing candidates.

Party members say the party has a good set of representation in all constituencies from diverse background and expertise’; “yet sharing a common vision for our country and one who can feel the pulse of the nation.”

On gender, the difficulty to find good women candidates was underlined. “We believe in meritocracy and we will support capable candidates irrespective of their sex or ethnicity,” Dasho Pema Chewang said.

“Even if we are not able to achieve good gender representation among the candidates, our party strongly believes in inclusive governance and will diligently work towards that, through innovative policy and legislative measures,” Dasho added.

The motives/ideologies and other distinct features of the party will be shared after the registration.

“I can only tell that governance will be highly participatory, inclusive, paying attention to details and not overlooking any issues faced by our people,” Dasho said.

Raising fund would be a challenging for the new party with small membership base. Electoral laws says that one can raise funds through membership fees and voluntary contribution. However, the party said, “We will go by the book and ensure to optimize the use of state funding and maximize the impact.”

Sources say the party has voted for office bearers with Vice Presidents from the South and West. However, it cannot be revealed now. The paper learned that civil servants and even some incumbent National Council (NC) members are joining the party as candidates.

Sangay Rabten from Thimphu