NPF legislators free to form govt.

NPF legislators free to form govt.
Dr. Shürhozelie Liezietsu, T.R. Zeliang and other leaders at the CEC meeting on Wednesday. (NP)
Correspondent KOHIMA, JUN 12 (NPN) | Publish Date: 6/12/2019 12:07:47 PM IST

Leaving little to imagination about the desperate situation facing one of India’s oldest regional party the NPF, its president and veteran regional politician,  Dr. Shürhozelie Liezietsu has unplugged his authority over the NPF Legislature Party (NPF-LP) by giving it a free hand to decide on how to bring about a “change in the government” and also assured the party of his full support.  

Dr. Shürhozelie said this at the NPF Central Executive Council (CEC) emergency meeting held here on Wednesday, where he admitted that being in the opposition wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea and so left it to his party legislators to decide on being in a government but at the same time, prove  their integrity, firmness and commitment towards their people. “The way an opposition member behaves will have long-term effect on his political career,” he remarked.

Toning down his earlier vow to not have any truck with either BJP or NDPP, the NPF party president admitted the despite efforts of the party legislature to form a secular government, the process was not attainable but assured of his party’s support to  any arrangement that did not compromise on the regional identity of the NPF.   He also left it to the legislature to work out the strategy to bring about the change of government.  

Meanwhile, the NPF president reiterated his party’s stand seeking integration of “all Naga ancestral Dr. Shürhozelie also reaffirmed to uphold the party principles and policies on integration of all Naga areas under  one administrative roof” as enshrined in the party’s constitution.

Dr. Shürhozelie remarked that Nagas wanted an early settlement that was honourable and inclusive “as piece meal solution will not serve any purpose”.

He congratulated Dr Lorho S Pfoze for winning the Outer Manipur Parliamentary constituency seat and thanked all party workers for their support and civil society groups in Manipur that supported NPF. 

Stating that he was aware of the strengths of different political parties, Dr. Shürhozelie commented that NPF decided not to divide secular votes and make best use of a “bad bargain” by lending unconditional issue-based support to Congress candidate.

He alleged that the “negative approach” of Congress leaders also had an impact, though KL Chishi did well.

On NPF’s stand in Manipur, he explained though BJP snapped off ties with his party in Nagaland, NPF had been lending support to the BJP government in Manipur that was based more on “circumstantial reasons” beyond the jurisdiction of political parties that every sensible person ought to understand. He revealed that NPF had taken a decision to withdraw support to the BJP Government in Manipur in principle on February 8.

Though the BJP-NPF tie in Manipur might not have any impact on either party, Liezietsu claimed that NPF did not want to vitiate the atmosphere in any manner in the backdrop of ongoing peace process and signing of the Framework Agreement signed between Government of India and NSCN (I-M).

He alleged that NPF’s political adversaries were deliberately trying their best to provoke it so that the regional party withdrew support to the BJP government in Manipur. He, however, asserted that NPF would not be “pressurised” by such provocations and take a wrong step as “to strive to work for peace and settlement” was the party’s declared policy.

Joining party president, NPF-LP leader TR Zeliang also congratulated the newly-elected MP from Outer Manipur and thanked party workers and supporters for electing Lorho.

He reminded the audience of chief minister Neiphiu Rio’s statement in April 2018 that integration was not possible.

Referring to the resolution adopted in Nagaland Legislative Assembly on CAB, Zeliang alleged that PDA government wanted to oppose CAB but was still under the impression that Nagas were protected under Article 371 (A), even as he stressed that the Article had nothing to do with CAB.

He maintained that if Nagas believed that Article 371 (A) would save them from CAB, then that would remain just a dream.

Zeliang also slammed newly-elected LokSahba member TokhehoYepthomi and sought his clarification on his comment that “those immigrants who had come after 2014 will not be affected”. He urged Lorho to raise the issue if the Bill was re-introduced in Parliament and not to remain absent during its session like Tokheho.

Alleging that Rio could not respond to the query for which project Rs 765 crore or how the amount was utilised, Zeliang said the PDA government was busy in poaching NPF legislators and party workers and did not care for public.

In his brief address, NPF legislator VikhehoSwu reminded the members that the opposition had its own role to play, adding it was disturbing to note that the elected members and office-bearers were leaving the party.

He said if an office-bearer or an MLA though that the opposition had no role to play, then he or she must understand that even while in opposition, if a person had the will to work, then he or she could perform better than the ruling party legislators.

Swu underlined that to bring about a change in the government, there had to be a genuine reason and the party must stand united, adding the current government was facing many issues.

Speaking on the occasion, Lorho thanked the party and all his supporters for electing him as the MP and sought cooperation and guidance from the seniors as he was a newcomer.

He assured to continue working to strengthen the party and work vigorously for an early solution to the Naga political issue and the Naga nation.

The programme was chaired by NPF vice-president PusazoLurüo.

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