Burma Sets By-Election Date For April 1 – OpEd


By Zin Linn

Burma (Myanmar) plans to hold the by-elections on April 1, 2012, quoting a government official BBC Burmese Service said on Friday. The official announcement would be come out this evening through state-media, according to Ko Ko, chairman of the Rangoon Division Election Commission.

Burma’s opposition party the National League for Democracy (NLD), led by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, submitted its application to Union Election Commission on 25 November to reregister contesting in forthcoming by-election. Twenty-one senior members as party founders, including Suu Kyi, Tin Oo and Win Tin made the submission in the capital, Naypyitaw, a spokesman for the NLD said.

After Suu Kyi’s party submitted its application to UEC, Lower House Speaker Thura Shwe Mann welcomed the NLD’s return to parliament politics, after it was dissolved earlier this year for boycotting the 2010 elections. Shwe Mann said he welcomes Aung San Suu Kyi on behalf of the People’s Parliament if she was planning to compete for it.

Aung San Suu Kyi, who officially registered her opposition party on 23 November, has already said she has determined to stand in the polls.

The NLD was given the green light from authorities this month to rejoin mainstream politics, paving the way for the Nobel laureate to run for a seat in the new parliament. Upper house speaker Khin Aung Myint, who also met Suu Kyi on 23 November, described her visit as positive.

The chairman of Burma’s Union Election Commission (EC), Tin Aye, has promised pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi that he will make sure the imminent by-elections are free and fair, and that the government was committed to work together with the opposition for the interests of the country.

Asian Correspondent

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