By Lobsang Wangyal
MCLEOD GANJ, India, 1 April 2016
Sikyong Lobsang Sangay said that his honour has been saved by his victory in the just-concluded Tibetan general election. He has been re-elected to the top post of the exile Tibetans for another five-year term.
Speaking during the final session of the 11th Tibetan Parliament, which has been holding its budget session since 21 March, Sangay said that it became a matter of honour to participate in the debates and speak to the accusations against him.
“I participated in the election debates for ‘izzath ka sawal’ [for the sake of my honour]. I am not as excited about winning the election as that my ‘izzath bach gaya hai’ [my honour has been saved],” Sangay said, using Hindi phrases.
The election process, which took more than ten months, degenerated into personal attacks between the two candidates and their supporters.
Sangay won the election with a comfortable margin, beating rival Penpa Tsering by more than 8,000 votes. The results will be officially announced by the Chief Election Commission on 27 April.
Speaker Penpa Tsering, in his impressive concluding remarks said that now the elections are over it is time to leave differences behind and to move forward in unity to fight for the cause of Tibet.
Tsering noted that he saw many writings and drawings attacking the candidates during the elections, and said, “This creativity could now be used in service of the Tibetan cause.”
He emphasised that Tibetans should all work for the Charter of the Tibetans-in-exile, and not make individuals more important than the Charter.