UDP firm on demand for James’ removal

Staff Reporter

Shillong, March 24: The United Democratic Party has reiterated its demand for the removal of the incumbent Power Minister James K Sangma and the CMD of MeECL, Arun Kumar Kembhavi from their current positions.

This comes a day after the Ministers and MLAs of the party alleged that they were never consulted on the decision to put forward this demand. The situation also subsequently led to the National People’s Youth Front (NPYF) – the youth wing of the NPP slamming the UDP’s general secretary.

In its tirade on Mawthoh yesterday, the NPYF accused UDP general secretary and former Nongthymmai legislator Jemino Mawthoh of being a ‘mouthpiece’ of the opposition Congress by sending a letter to the Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma demanding the Power Minister’s removal.

However, a statement signed by two working presidents of the UDP – Paul Lyngdoh and TW Chyne – and vice president Alantry F Dkhar maintained that as per Article 27 of the constitution of the UDP, the general secretary is the empowered authority to sign all documents authorised by the party.

“Apropos the charge of the NPP youth wing that the UDP general secretary had unilaterally taken an opportunistic call on his own to write to the Chief Minister urging his good office to relieve the current Power Minister and the CMD from their current positions, the party stands firm on its call for reasons that will be taken up as and when the Chief Minister, who is the Chairman of MDA is available for discussion,” they said.

The UDP leaders also expressed regret that due to paucity of time and the erratic mobile network which again is a problem arising out of the power crisis, it was not able to take on board its Ministers in the government with regard to this demand.

“However, as a party, we remain firm on our call, in the general interest of the state. We do not wish to wash dirty linen in public when the same can be rectified internally and we leave it to the wisdom of the Chief Minister to take this forward,” they said.

“As a responsible partner, we only took steps in the current direction to apprise the authorities of the gravity of the situation,” the leaders also added.

Stating that power is an important part of governance, a sector that drives forward not only the economy but governance as a whole, they said, “We regret the fact that those who are blinded are possibly forcibly induced with ignorance on the ongoing depredation of MeECL which if not addressed suitably, is going to lead to the collapse of MeECL.”

“This in turn will provide the dispensation of the day with the opportunity to privatise the corporation which will subject the consumers to the mercy of the Corporation. The party will soon meet to address this pressing issue,” they stated.

Meanwhile, sources in the party informed that a meeting is likely to be convened by the president Metbah Lyngdoh to discuss and take a call on the further course of action on this issue.