2016 Central Tibetan Administration general election

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2016 Central Tibetan Administration general election
Flag of Tibet.svg
  2011 October 18, 2015. March 20, 2016 2021  
 First partySecond party
  Lobsang Sangay, Tibetan Prime Minister.jpg Penpa Tsering 2015.jpg
Candidate Lobsang Sangay Penpa Tsering
PartyEndorsed by National Democratic Party Independent
Popular vote33,23424,752

Sikyong before election

Lobsang Sangay

Elected Sikyong

Lobsang Sangay

Elections for the office of Sikyong (Prime Minister) and the Chitue (Members) of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile were held between October 18, 2015 and March 20, 2016. Tibetans in exile voted for the fourth time their political representative and executive of the Central Tibetan Administration, the self-proclaimed Tibetan government in exile. The election was overseen and organized by the independent CTA agency, Tibetan Election Commission.


Incumbent Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay [1] ran for re-election, winning with 57.3% of the votes in the second round, over his main rival Speaker of the Parliament in Exile, Penpa Tsering. [2] [3] Other candidates were Chairman of the Federation of Tibetan Cooperatives in India, Tashi Wangdu, and former Chinese political prisoner and president of Tibetan Ex-Political Prisoner's Association, Lukar Jam. [1]

For the first time this election showed and proliferation of political parties, something unusual in Tibetan politics. [4] The National Democratic Party, a moderate independent leaning party, has traditionally been the only political party in the Tibetan diaspora.[ citation needed ] The NDPT endorsed both Sangay and Pempa Tsering for their current offices. The pro-Middle Way Approach Tibetan People’s Party endorsed Wangdu [5] and also presented its own candidates for Parliament. The radically separatist Tibetan National Congress endorsed Jam. [6]


Preliminary round

The preliminary round of voting for Sikyong was held on 18 October 2015. [7] [8] [9] Candidates needed to receive at least 33% of the vote in order to be eligible for the final round. [10]

There were six candidates; Lobsang Sangay (incumbent Sikyong, endorsed by the National Democratic Party), Penpa Tsering (Speaker of Parliament, also endorsed by NDPT), Atsok Lukar Jam (former political prisoner and activist, endorsed by Tibetan National Congress), Tashi Wangdu (President of the Federation of Tibetan Cooperatives in India, endorsed by People's Party of Tibet), Tashi Topgyal (independent candidate) and Samdhong Rinpoche. All candidates except Jam (who wants full independence of Tibet from China) supported the Middle Way Approach to Chinese-Tibetan relations. This is the same approach endorsed by the Dalai Lama and seeks to achieve real autonomy for Tibet inside the Chinese territory. [1]

CTA Sikyong election preliminary round, 2016 [11]
National Democratic Party Lobsang Sangay 30,50866.71
National Democratic Party Penpa Tsering 10,73223.45
Tibetan National Congress Atsok Lukar Jam 2,5575.59
People's Party of Tibet Tashi Wangdu1,8804.11
IndependentTashi Topgyal380.08
IndependentSamdhong Rinpoche180.04
Total formal votes45,733--

Final round

CTA Sikyong election final round, 2016 [12]
National Democratic Party Lobsang Sangay33,87657.08
National Democratic Party Penpa Tsering 24,86441.89
Total formal votes58,74099.9-
Informal votes6130.01-
Turnout 59,353100-

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