NLA session: Precautionary steps introduced; samples collection of legislators underway
Kohima, July 26 (EMN): As the sixth session of the 13th Nagaland Legislative Assembly (NLA) is scheduled to be held on Thursday (July 30), samples of the members of legislative assembly (MLA) and other supporting staff were collected to test for Covid-19 on Sunday at the old chief minister’s bungalow in Kohima.
The NLA Speaker, Sharingain Longkumer, while interacting with journalists, said that the NLA secretariat has taken all precautionary measures to conduct the sixth session of the 13th NLA.
“The honourable members, be it from opposition bench and treasury bench, all of them comprise a very important part in the government. So in the interest of the people, and for governance, we could not rule out this situation as they are being escorted by security guards and by drivers,” he said.
Longkumer stated that although all precautionary measures would be taken, there is ‘no control outside’.
In the event of anyone testing positive for Covid-19 following the session, the entire government machinery—comprising the legislators, the administrative head of departments (AHOD) and head of departments (HOD)— would be affected and it would bring the entire state of Nagaland to a standstill as contact tracing will go on and everyone has to be quarantined.
The speaker reiterated that the assembly secretariat expects around 500 footfalls for the session and he said, “We could not take the chance, that’s why the government was apprised and with that we had hurriedly made all the arrangement and this had to be done.”
He stated that the initiative was in the interest of everyone, stating that in the house of 60 members, 43 members are more than 50 years above and seven members are above 70 years.
“I cannot take chance, so I have to resort and try out all resources available at my disposal to ensure that the members, including government officials, are all safe,” Longkumer said.
While reiterating that other states’ assembly are having a minimum decorum, Longkumer said NLA is only a 60-member house. He however stated that the office of the speaker is still open if certain aged senior members of the 13th NLA feel that they should stay away from the session.
“I will be open for it and I will permit it,” he said.
Meanwhile the collection of samples for Covid-19 in connection with the sixth assembly session will continue till July 28 at the assembly secretariat from 9 am till 12 noon.