Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and legislators of the People’s Democratic Alliance during the launching of 26 Aonglenden AC Bye-election PDA consensus candidate, Sharingain Longkumer at Ungma, March 22. (Morung Photo)
NDPP-led PDA launches campaign for 26 Aonglenden AC
Morung Express News
Ungma | March 22
The NDPP-led PDA launched its campaign for 26 Aonglenden Assembly Constituency Bye-Election here today where Sharingain Longkumer is contesting as the consensus candidate of the coalition Government.
It was attended by a host of NDPP, BJP and JD (U) party functionaries and legislators. Earlier in the morning, Sharingain Longkumer filed his nomination paper who was accompanied by PDA leaders including Nagaland Chief Minister, Neiphiu Rio.
Longkumer, while addressing the launch programme of his campaign expressed gratitude to the NDPP and PDA for reposing their faith in him and outlined his agenda for deciding to contest in the bye-election. He said that he was standing for “change” and that he would stand to be the voice of the Aonglenden AC, for youth and women empowerment, sustainable development and digital empowerment of the constituency.
The 37-year old candidate who would become the youngest legislator if elected, further said that he would work for talent and skill development by focusing on target groups and stand for preservation and promotion of cultural heritage.
Earlier in the programme, NDPP president and PDA chairman, Chingwang Konyak welcomed Imnatiba and L Khumo, the two former NPP legislators who merged with NDPP recently. Chingwang said that the PDA coalition was strong and stable and that the government would work for peace, progress, development and prosperity under the leadership of Neiphiu Rio.
While asking the voters not to be swayed by “election propaganda,” he wooed the Aonglenden electorate by asking them to grasp the opportunity given to them on a silver platter.
He also requested the people to vote for the PDA candidate in the Lok Sabha election, Tokheho Yepthomi, which will be held simultaneously with the bye-election on April 11.
Nine out of the 12 BJP legislators in the PDA attended the launch, where Deputy CM, Y Patton, Minister Temjen Imna Along and Advisor Dr Longrineken also addressed the gathering. Patton in his address persuaded Ungma villagers to trust Neiphiu Rio and vote for their consensus candidate.
Along said that the whole PDA was in Ungma today, as a show of unity and in support of their young and visionary candidate. Meanwhile, Dr Longrineken asked Ungma villagers if they would want to be in the “ruling or opposition.”
Lone JD (U) legislator in the PDA, G Kaito Aye who is also an in-law of Ungma village, said that it was the “right time to make the right decision” and asked the villagers to seize the opportunity as Ungma village need to be in the ruling party.
Independent legislator in the PDA government, Tongpang Ozukum asked the villagers to vote intelligently.
Minister and election campaign in-charge, Metsubo Jamir, meanwhile expressed regret that there were four intending candidates in the fray for the bye-election, adding that an NDPP candidate elected unopposed would have been best for the constituency. He said that there were now three NDPP legislators from the district with the joining of Imnatiba, and that there would very soon be four. A “ruling government” can weave a “miracle” any time, he said, adding that the number could rise to seven NDPP legislators from the district very soon.
NPP-turned-NDPP legislator Imnatiba meanwhile urged Ungma villagers to vote for the PDA consensus candidate adding, “Naga people expect matured decision from Ungma village.” On his merger with NDPP, he clarified that it was he who approached the Chief Minister and not vice versa which he said was done in the interest and for the good of Naga people.
Ungma village council chairman Alemtoshi Imsong, NDPP 26 Aonglenden AC president Nungsangmeren Longkumer, NDPP worker Supo Jamir and the candidate’s mother Pangerla were among the speakers.
NPF lacks leadership, vision: Rio
Chief Minister Rio while speaking at the campaign launching said that opposition NPF lacks leadership, vision and guidance and that they did not do their homework well. Accusing the NPF of having no interest for the Nagas, Rio said that NPF along with the Congress party did not participate in the consultative meeting on the Citizenship Amendment Bill. He added that his cabinet had rejected the CAB and reiterated his stand that Nagaland was safe under Article 371(A) and BEFRA 1873. Further, his cabinet has acted on bringing the entire state including Dimapur district under the purview of the ILP regime, he said.
Ridiculing the NPF as a party torn with misunderstandings and rife with internal differences, Rio said that the opposition with 26 MLAs was yet to find a candidate to contest the MP election. He went on to say that if the NPF were to support the Congress candidate in the MP election without fielding their own candidate, then the people would be the best judge to say where the NPF stood. “The day NPF declares support for Congress will be the day NPF supporters turn to NDPP,” he declared.
Rio went on to predict that the BJP-led NDA alliance would return to power. He also said that there was “high hope” for arriving at a conclusion for the Naga political problem under Modi.
Calling for a peaceful election, Rio also said that electoral politics should not be reduced to “khel or clan politics” and expressed hope that the relationship between Ungma and Tuophema would be strengthened with the election of Sharingain Longkumer.
Rio also expressed appreciation to the former NPP legislators who recently merged with the NDPP for their “bold decision.”