(TibetanReview.net, Sep03’21) – As the prospect of the 17th Tibetan Parliament in Exile (TPiE) missing its first session – which is usually due this month – keeps becoming ever more real, The Sikyong of the Central Tibetan Administration has on Sep 2 called for a speedy resolution of the issue behind it under the rubric of the Charter of Tibetans in Exile. The TPiE currently has only 21 members plus the pro tem speaker while 22 others are refusing to take their oath of office as prescribed by the Charter. The Parliament cannot meet unless it has at least 30 members, the prescribed two-third quorum, taking part.
In his statement for the Tibetan democracy Day, Sikyong Penpa Tsering said the situation had not only prevented the TPiE from carrying out its legislative functions but also its Tibet campaign activities.
He said information had been brought to his notice showing China was exploiting the situation to spread falsehoods in occupied Tibet, create division within the exile Tibetan community, and misuse it at international forums.
Also, “it has created great concern and apprehension among the governments, parliaments and Tibet supporters who genuinely support us,” he said, without specifying the letter from US Acting Secretary of State Lisa Peterson who wrote to Secretary Tsewang Ngodhup of the TPiE last month.
Besides, the Sikyong said Tibetans inside Tibet were calling for the issue to be resolved immediately or they would stop their activities for the Tibetan cause.
He said everyone knew “there are people in our small community who are just venting emotions without careful thinking.”
He urged the elected candidates to “make no mistake in their consideration by taking responsibility in the highest interest of our cause.”
He warned that a continued intransigence will only lead to the collapse of the Tibetan administration.
“The Kashag is ready and firmly committed to work with the parliament as mandated by the Charter and make concerted efforts in working towards the greater cause of Tibet and welfare of the Tibetan people.”
This is the second major CTA public function during the term of the 17th TPiE without a statement from the latter.
Twenty of the 22 intransigent members recently issued a statement, vowing not to take their oath under the Charter so long as the three justice commissioners of the Tibetan Supreme Justice Commission (TSJC) did not leave their post. All 20 belong to the Dotoe Province – 10 of them being the entirety of the religious constituency elected candidates and the other 10 being the entirety of the Dotoe constituency elected candidates.
The Charter does not prescribe any time limit for members to take their oath.
The three justice commissioners were illegally dismissed from their posts in a hastily passed resolution by the 16th TPiE exile on Mar 25. The TSJC had earlier penalized the standing committee members of the 16th TPiE after they failed to explain their illegal decision to cancel the Sep 2020 session of the TPiE to its satisfaction. They were deprived of their voting right for the preliminary Tibetan polls, but not their right to stand for the elections, which most of them won.