MPA all set to win Speaker's election after Cong withdraws

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Shillong, Mar 19 (UNI) The Congress party today withdrew its nominee for the Speaker of the Meghalaya Assembly, election for which is slated tomorrow.

Congress' decision to pull out from the race followed Chief Minister D D Lapang's resignation, after he failed to muster enough support in the House today.

The Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance(MUA) had nominated former Tourism Minister Charles Pyngrope as their candidate.

MUA had 28 members, including three Independents.

United Democratic Party(UDP) MLA Bindo M Lanong is the nominee of the NCP-backed Meghalaya Progressive Alliance(MPA), which assumed office on Wednesday evening.

MPA has the support of 31 legislators, comprising 14 from NCP, 11 from UDP, two from HSPDP, one each from KHNAM and BJP and two Independents, in the 60-member House(presently 59, as election to Baghmara seat was countermanded due to the death of a Congress candidate).

The election to Baghmara seat has been rescheduled for March 22.

With the Congress opting out, Mr Lanong is all set to be elected uncontested as the Assembly Speaker as no other candidate is in fray.

''As a good gesture, we have decided not to put up our candidate against the official nominee,'' MUA spokesperson Dr R C Laloo told UNI here.

Moreover, he said that the MUA does not have the requisite number, the reason why it had to step aside.

UNI RRK LL DB2110

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