From our Correspondent
SHILLONG, March 21: tiol People’s Party (NPP) legislator from Mendipathar Timothy D Shira was elected the Deputy Speaker of the Meghalaya Assembly. Shira defeated Opposition Congress candidate David Nongrum by 16 votes.
While Shira (68), the former Deputy Chief Minister and oldest-most member in the Assembly, polled 36 votes, his rival Nongrum secured 20 votes. One vote was found invalid.
At present, the strength of the MDA coalition is 35, barring the Speaker. The Opposition Congress has 20 members.
Shira was the Deputy Chief Minister during the then Meghalaya Progressive Alliance government that lasted only for one year (2008-2009) when the present Speaker was the Chief Minister. Interestingly, both the senior members – Dr Roy and Shira, who were together in then MPA government – are now Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively of the Assembly.
In a turn of events, lone Khun Hynniewtrep tiol Awakening Movement (KHM) member from North Shillong, Adelbert Nongrum, who did not vote during the Speaker’s election, voted for the post of Deputy Speaker.
Nongrum and Independent SK Sun, however, did not declare their affiliation so far.