Naga People’s Mandate is for Reconciliation

The overall situation with regard to the ongoing reconciliation process is very fluid and therefore worrisome with the potential danger of things going from bad to worse. It is a decisive stage for the Naga political groups in particular and they must take the right call which is to complete the covenant of reconciliation as agreed upon before God and the Naga people. Make no mistake that reconciliation is the loud and clear mandate of the Naga people. Our Naga public has a big heart and they are not bothered about who is right or wrong or who has deviated, committed errors etc. Our national groups should not indulge in the game of one upmanship because people are simply not interested in the blame game. They just want the Naga reconciliation process to move on. Everyone is eager for the highest level meeting of the top leaders. People have seen the arrival of Chairman Isak Chishi Swu and General Th Muivah to Dimapur for the highest level meet. They are also aware of the efforts being made to get Chairman SS Khaplang, Brig S. Singyna, Commander in Chief Gen Khole Konyak, General Secretary Kitovi Zhimomi and others for the highest level meet. Nothing should therefore stop this meeting from taking place. This is the demand of the Naga public. They want a way out of from the present imbroglio. People and nations talk about national interest. For the Nagas, reconciliation is of paramount national interest. By meeting and resolving issues across the table, our leaders will be listening to the will of the people.
The current situation and how we respond is indeed crucial for the kind of future that we want. Do we go back to the bitterness of the past or do we move forward towards a shared future of peace, prosperity and political honor. It is absolutely essential that the Naga political groups must quickly work on a ‘common Naga agenda’. There are so many things to be done on the home front but we are busy wasting our time, energy and God given talent on bickering and pulling down one another. If our political groups fail to take the political initiative, our Naga society and polity will plunge into further turmoil. Remember a few years ago, Naga civil society after serious deliberation had resolved to come out with a common Naga platform. However the Joint Working Group of the Covenant of Reconciliation shot down such an idea saying that the issue was with the national groups. Listening to this valid argument, the so called common Naga platform was sort of put in the backburner. However the national groups have failed to do anything concrete as far as setting the agenda goes. If the national groups are unable to take the common political initiative, a time may come when the Naga public may be compelled to set up an appropriate platform.
Then there are several ominous signs which our leaders should not ignore. For instance in the last few years, many offshoot armed groups have been floated. The latest is the formation of the so called Zeliangrong United Front (ZUF) encompassing all Zeliangrong Naga areas. As per reports, the ZUF was floated with its slogan of ‘Zeliangrong Ringtelo’, meaning long live the Zeliangrong people. The ZUF was formed with a primary aim to protect the Zeliangrong interest. Such development should also be seen as a failure of the present status-quo.  Any delay in coming together of the Naga political groups will allow vested interest elements to try and fill in the power vacuum which will lead to further division and mutual suspicion among the Nagas.  At the end of the day the real issue is making sure that the Naga reconciliation process and its logical conclusion becomes a reality so that an inclusive nation building agenda can be the next step. Otherwise we are doomed to the next stage of violent upheaval. As urged in a recent editorial in this newspaper, we need to save the reconciliation process at all cost. Naga people’s mandate is for reconciliation. Let our leaders listen to this plea coming from the people.