SHILLONG, Nov 02: The independent MLA representing Nongkrem in the State Assembly, Lambor Malngiang has suggested that the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA), which he is supporting adopts the formula used in 2004 so that a consensus can be arrived at on the selection of the Alliance’s common candidate in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
“If possible we would like to see that the same formula adopted in 2004 may be used for selection of common candidate of the MDA for the upcoming LS polls,” Malngiang, who is also the chairman of the Meghalaya State Planning Board (MSPB), said here on Friday.
He recalled that in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, the regional political parties had unanimously supported S Loniak Marbaniang as the candidate of the Regional People’s Alliance (RPA) from the Shillong parliamentary seat.
Marbaniang however was defeated by Congress veteran leader late Paty Ripple Kyndiah who secured 190058 votes. The RPA candidate came second as he could manage only 119162 votes.
“A common candidate should be somebody who is acceptable to all and should contest on a free symbol (independent). Marbaniang that time had contested as an Independent candidate and supported by the RPA,” Malngiang said.
The Shillong parliamentary seat is presently represented by two-time Member of Parliament (MP) Vicent H Pala of the opposition Congress.
Malngiang claimed that the formula, if adopted, can not only ensure defeat of the opposition Congress but will also prevent any misunderstanding that may arise out of the exercise among the MDA partners.
Recently, the United Democratic Party (UDP), which mooted the idea of having common candidates, had officially announced former Nongthymmai legislator Jemino Mawthoh as its candidate for the Shillong seat.
While it is all set to project Mawthoh as common candidate of the MDA, the UDP which is also the main ally of the MDA government had also urged the ruling National People’s Party (NPP) to consider contesting only from the Tura parliamentary seat.
The issue of common candidate was also discussed the MDA coordination committee recently in which coalition partners had sought time to discuss the matter within their respective parties before coming back with their proposals in the next meeting.
However, varied of views and opinions on the matter have also emerged from the different MDA coalition partners. The People’s Democratic Front (PDF) said that it would take a call on whether to propose its candidate before the MDA committee on November 5.
Similarly, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had also expressed its interest to field candidates for the LS polls.
Malngiang however said that the clear stand of the coordination committee is to meet again very soon on the matter. “All parties are allowed to propose their own candidates and we want to complete the exercise and take a collective decision on this regard before the end this month,” he added.
He also added that the proposal of the UDP is a matter subjected for discussion in the coordination committee.
Malngiang claimed that the Lok Sabha elections will not affect the stability of the MDA government.