UNC expedites poll campaign
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, December 26: Under the primary objective of expediting the Naga unification movement and ensure projection of the right candidates in the forthcoming State Assembly election slated for February next, the United Naga Council (UNC) has put its campaign on the track.

UNC leaders and representatives of its constituent units like the Naga Mothers Association, Naga Peoples' Movement for Human Rights, All Naga Students Association, Manipur etc during the campaign appealed to the people to choose and elect only those candidates who are committed to upholding and honouring the aspiration of Naga people and its cause.

"So far we have successfully completed our campaign in all the hill district headquarters where Naga population dominates and after Christmas we will resume the same in the sub-divisions within the eleven Assembly segments from which the same number of Naga MLAs were elected", said the Council's general secretary Azang Longmai.

It is now very clear that the council in consultation with the Naga people would project only independent candidates, he said while expressing confidence that the Naga people too are aware of the ongoing campaign and would act accordingly.

After completing the campaign UNC would convene a meeting of all the aspiring candidates and take an undertaking from them that they would work for the cause of the Naga people and extend support the peace process and protect the Naga people's inherent rights if elected.

At the same time another declaration from all village chiefs would also be taken to ensure their villagers definitely support the projected candidates, Azang confided.

He, however, declined to name some probable candidates so far endorsed by the people.

"It would be premature to name them now," he insisted.

On being asked about the recent resignation of two Naga MLAs of Federal Party of Manipur (FPM) and their reported pledge they would work for the cause of the Naga people, Azang said, "UNC heartily welcomes their decision and we hope that they too would endorse the peoples' desire to contest as independent candidates".

Responding a query he said if any candidate contest on national or regional political parties' tickets "the Naga people would reject and ensure their debacle in the said poll" Recently UNC had released its objectives on the issue in the form of a pamphlet christened "Call For Democratic expression of Our Birthright Position Paper on the 9th General Election, 2007 Manipur".

Among other points, it appealed to the Naga people of the state through their respective churches, tribal council/hohos, professionals, intellectual circle, and other social bodies to rally behind the call to mutually strengthen the struggle for the unification of the Nagas.