Pangteang sworn in as Nagaland minister

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Kohima, July 24 (IANS) Senior Naga People’s Front (NPF) legislator E.E. Pangteang was on Monday sworn in as a cabinet minister in the T.R. Zelaing-led government.

Pangteang was to take oath last Saturday along with eight NPF and two BJP legislators. However, he did not turn up at the Raj Bhavan as his fellow party legislator Noke Wangnao had protested against his inclusion.

Sources close to Zeliang said Wangnao would be appointed as Chairman of Democratic Alliance of Nagaland with cabinet rank.

Governor P.B. Acharya administered the oath of office to Pangteang in a ceremony attended by the Chief Minister, ministers, legislators, government officials besides security officials.

With the induction of Pangteang, the cabinet, which has a limit of 12, has been filled up.

The Chief Minister on Saturday had expanded his ministry, inducting eight NPF and two Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislators, after Zeliang won the floor test in the assembly.

The NPF headed by dismissed Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu on Friday night expelled 19 and suspended 10 legislators for violating the party’s constitution.

Yanthungo Patton, Kipili Sangtam, G. Kaito Aye, Imkong L. Imchen and Tokheho Yepthomi, who were among those expelled, and suspended legislators Neiba Kronu and Neikiesalie Nicky Kire were sworn in as cabinet ministers.

Kejong Chang was suspended from the primary membership of the party after he took oath as cabinet.

Pangteang, who is a senior NPF leader, was the only one who did not face any action.

Zeliang was expelled from the NPF for six years after taking oath as Chief Minister on Wednesday, hours after the Governor dismissed Liezietsu for failing to prove majority in the assembly.

Zeliang on Friday won the floor test, getting the support of 36 NPF, four BJP and seven Independent members in the 60-member assembly, where one seat is vacant.

Ten NPF and one Independent members voted against him. Liezietsu was not present in the assembly as he is not a member.

Zeliang is expected to induct some legislators as Parliamentary Secretaries later on the day besides allocating portfolios of the cabinet ministers.

–IANS

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