BJP’s deputy chief minister Y Patton has been allotted home and national highways, a key portfolio as Nagaland is strategically important in the Centre’s Act East policy.
BJP has got the lion’s share of the Nagaland cabinet, with six ministers, even though it has only 12 MLAs against NDPP’s 18.
S P Phom has been given health and family welfare portfolio, P P Konyak will handle transport, civil aviation, railways and land resources, Jacob Zhimomi has been allotted public health and engineering while K Sangtam got soil and water conservation and women and child development, and T I Along will take care of higher education and technical education.
The lone independent MLA Tongpang Ozukum will be the public works department minister. JD(U)’s G Kaito Aye has been allotted agriculture and cooperation department.
NDPP’s C M Chang is the new parliamentary affairs minister, besides holding portfolios of forests, environment and climate change.
Neiba Kronu, another NDPP leader has been allotted the planning and coordination and the land revenue portfolio. Metsubo Jamir is the new urban development minister.
The delay in allotment of portfolios had fuelled speculations about Rio’s ability to do a balancing act and keep the flock together.
The BJP-NDPP alliance, which has the support of 34 MLAs, including a JD(U) MLA and an independent besides the two NPP legislators, proved its majority on the floor of the house on Tuesday, winning 33 votes in the 60-member assembly.
NPF, a regional behemoth, has 26 MLAs, making it the single largest party in the house, but it could not gather the numbers for the majority to form the government.
A section of BJP MLAs are also reported to be unhappy over being overlooked for ministerial positions.