DIMAPUR, July 24 - Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang inducted another Minister into his Council of Ministers today, taking the total number of Ministers in his Ministry to 12.
Governor PB Acharya administered the oath of office and secrecy to the newly-inducted Cabinet Minister EE Pangteang at Raj Bhavan, Kohima today in presence of Cabinet Ministers, MLAs and heads of departments.
Zeliang was sworn in as Chief Minister on July 19 and he proved his majority on the floor of the State Assembly on July 21. He inducted 10 Cabinet Ministers on July 22.
Meanwhile, 11 legislators (10 NPF and one Independent) belonging to former Chief Minister Dr Shurhozelie Liezietsu�s camp have decided to approach the Supreme Court after Speaker Dr Imtiwapang Aier did not respond to the demands made by them on July 18 and 20 as to on what ground he appointed Chief Minister TR Zeliang as NPF Legislature Party whip and if he had done so by withdrawing recognition of Kiyanilie Peseyie as official whip.
Talking to media persons in Kohima on Sunday evening, former Speaker Chotisuh Sazo reiterated that the Speaker was obligated to clarify the matter since NPF is a registered party and its constitution accepted by the ECI.
Sazo explained that as per the NPF constitution Article 5 and Section 10, the party president authorises promulgation of ordinance to all members including the legislature. He further cited Tenth Schedule Para 2, 1b of the Constitution wherein it mentions that a political party has to give direction to its legislators whether to vote in favour or against or to abstain. This direction is issued by the Whip appointed by the party for its legislature, he stated.
Sazo pointed out that in the case with Zeliang, he appointed himself as leader of NPF Legislature Party and also as the Chief Whip of the party when he was already expelled from the NPF. He said the appointment of Kiyanilie as Whip was not revoked nor withdrawn and therefore, appointing Zeliang as the Whip of NPF will be challenged in court.
When the matter goes to Court on who is the Whip of the NPF, Sazo said if the ruling favoured NPF party then all the 37 NPF legislators who voted against the Whip will be disqualified unless the NPF party condones it within 15 days.