TODAY -

The question : After them who ? Muivah, Swu : Men of the season
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: August 13 2015 -



He appears to be the man of the season. From the power of the gun to the power and influence of the pen.

It has indeed been a long journey from the jungles to the negotiating table and along the way, Thuingaleng Muivah, the general secretary of the Isak-Muivah faction of the NSCN has obviously picked up friends and foes along the way.

So if the recent framework agreement inked between the NSCN (IM) and the Government of India has sent hopes soaring amongst the Naga people, it has undoubtedly sowed seeds of anxiety and distrust amongst other communities, notably in Manipur, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

Tough to say how the final agreement will turn out, but it is more than clear that the framework agreement has gone down very well with the Naga people who have reposed faith in the leadership of the IM faction of the NSCN.

Isak Chisi Swu is the other name that comes to mind whenever the NSCN (IM) comes up for discussion but at the moment, he is indisposed, recuperating in a hospital at Delhi.

Swu and Muivah are synonymous with the organisation called the NSCN (IM) and the natural question that follows is what will happen or is likely to happen when these two leaders call it a day.

Unlike the formal Government structure that one sees, it is not likely that an outfit, which has spent decades waging a bush war against the military of India, will have such an arrangement.

All the more reason why the question, ‘after them who ?’ has become all that more significant.

This is all that more so since Swu and Muivah are no longer in their prime years and have advanced in age. Who are the leaders well placed to take over from them ?

Difficult to say, since no one seems to have been anointed the successor. Something true with almost all the other underground outfits active and operating in the North East.

Difficult to say whether Swu and Muivah will together agree on any similar line of succession.

It is also not without reason why many see the NSCN (IM) as an organisation dominated by a particular tribe and this is something which Swu and Muivah cannot afford to ignore when the time comes to distance themselves from active participation in the working of the organisation.

Again it also stands that there are internal pulls and pushes within the tribe which is seen as dominating the politics of the NSCN (IM).

How this is managed may prove to be a more sensitive matter to the outfit than dealing with the external adversaries.

There is a reason why the internal dynamics are seen to be more decisive in deciding the future of an organisation and the Naga tribe is made up of numerous tribal groups, with not all seeing eye to eye on numerous critical issues.

Looking at the future leadership of the NSCN (IM) may sound a little far fetched at the moment, for the sense of having achieved something concrete must be running through all the people which the organisation is seen to represent.

This however is an important point and while the leadership of the NSCN (IM) may have started working towards this end, it would be certainly interesting to see how they go about it without ruffling anyone’s feather.

It would also do good for everyone not to over react to the latest development for anything may happen in the next couple of months.

Good sense should prevail in the minds of everyone and the first thing to acknowledge is that this is not the time for any ‘us versus them’ mentality.



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