The opposition Congress on Wednesday decided not to contest the elections to the post of chief executive member (CEM) and chairman of the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council, paving the way for fourth-time member from Shella constituency, Teiñwell Dkhar and three-time member, P. N. Syiem to get elected to the two high posts uncontested.
The opposition Congress decided not to contest the elections to both the posts because it lacks the requisite number. The Congress has only 10 members in the 29-member Council.
Congress Parliamentary Party (CPP) leader Lamphrang Blah said that the Congress decided not to contest the elections to both the posts because the party has no number, and would play the constructive role as opposition members.
Dkhar and Syiem filed their nomination papers for the post of CEM and chairman respectively before the KHADC secretary (legislative), M. Kharkrang on Wednesday after the oath taking of all the newly elected 29 members of the Council.
Though the elections to the post of Chairman and CEM of the Council were fixed on Thursday at 11 am and 2 pm respectively, however both Dkhar and Syiem stood elected without any contest.
East Khasi Hills district Deputy Commissioner; Matsiewdor W Nongbri will announce the name of Syiem for the post of Chairman on Thursday at 11 am.
Similarly, Syiem after taking over as the new Chairman of the Council will also announce the name of Dkhar as the new CEM of the Council at 2 pm.Dkhar has been the member of the KHADC from Shella constituency since 2004 and has not lost the election till date.
Dkhar, the loyal United Democratic Party (UDP) member is still the Chairman of the KHADC.
Syiem, who was elected twice as member of the KAHDC from Mawsynram constituency in 2009 and 2014, leftMawsynram this time and successfully contested the February-27 elections from Mawkhar-Pynthorumkhrah constituency.
Syiem was the CEM of the Council in the previous term.
Syiem and Dkhar were proposed as candidates for the post of Chairman and CEM, by members of the Council who formed the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) in the KHADC.
The UDA comprised of the United Democratic Party (UDP), National People’s Party (NPP), Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP), People’s Democratic Front and Independents.
The UDA has a total strength of 19 members which include UDP (7), NPP (7), HSPDP (2), PDF (1) and Independent (2).
CPP spokesperson, Ronnie V. Lyngdoh said that the Congress is not in a hurry to form the Executive Committee even as he predicted that the UDA-led EC would not last because it has already fixed the expiry date of the present EC.
The UDP has decided to allow Dkhar to hold the CEM post only for one year, after which, the post would be rotated to either Paul Lyngdoh or Titosstarwell Chyne.
“The present EC will not last because its expiry date has already been fixed for one year. How can you have an EC with a predetermine shelf life? Therefore, the Congress can provide a strong and stable EC but as of now we will sit in the Opposition and play our constructive role. Our members will not defect, but we expect members from other parties will join us,” Lyngdoh said.
He also said that members of the Council who together formed the UDA to form the EC have done it out of political compulsion.