Shillong, Mar 20: United Democratic Party (UDP) member and veteran politician Bindo M Lanong was today elected Speaker of the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly unopposed.
Pro-tem Speaker Hoping Stone Lyngdoh declared Mr Lanong, a candidate of the UDP-backed Meghalaya Progressive Alliance, elected after main Opposition Congress nominee Charles Pyngrope withdrew his nomination yesterday.
Mr Lanong succeeded in winning a seat in the Assembly after 20 years from Malki-Nongthymmai constituency in the March 3 elections.
He was first elected to the Assembly in 1983 as the All Parties Hill Leaders Conference candidate from the same constituency.
''I congratulate you on being the first person to be elected unopposed to the highest post of the Assembly,'' Chief Minister Dr Donkupar Roy said in the House after the elections.
Leader of the Opposition D D Lapang, in his brief speech in the House, assured all support to the Speaker.''We have confidence in you and expect that you will maintain the decorum of the House,'' Mr Lapang said.
Former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno A Sangma, who was elected as MLA from Tura seat, said, ''Having been a Speaker myself, I know how difficult it is to preside over the House. All over the world, there is an established convention that the Opposition Bench should have its say and the Treasury Bench should have its way.'' Later, Mr Lanong thanked the Congress and its nominee Charles Pyngrope for their well-considered decision to withdraw from the race.
''I will not let anybody down after you have reposed faith in me to preside over the House,'' Mr Lanong said.
Moreover, cutting across party lines, Legislators congratulated Mr Lanong for being elevated to the post of Speaker.