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Weeks 5 and 6: 2010 Elections Watch (6-19 April)

By Altsean-Burma  •  April 21, 2010

Developments

  • The impact of the NLD’s decision to boycott the elections on public confidence in the polls continued to be felt. In a survey involving 520 people in Rangoon, 252 (48%) responded that they do not intend to vote in the election if the NLD does not contest it.
  • The Arakan League for Democracy decided not to register as a political party. ALD Secretary Aye Thar Aung said the party would not contest the upcoming elections because the SPDC constitution and election laws were “not fair or just.”
  • To date, 19 political parties have registered for the elections: 16 new parties and three existing political parties.
  • The SPDC Election Commission announced the formation of 14 sub-commissions at State and Division levels and 67 sub-commissions at the district level. The Commission also held a three-day training in Naypyidaw for 252 officials from the court, immigration, and general administration departments who will be appointed as polling station officials.
  • A veteran editor at a weekly journal reported that the SPDC Censorship Board was imposing controls on domestic media that were “tighter than ever before.”

For more developments click here

Reactions

  • One hundred and five MPs from Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore endorsed a petition to ASEAN leaders, which called on ASEAN to expel Burma from the group. “With the promulgation of these apparently biased [election] laws […] the regime has forfeited its best opportunity to show willingness to engage in an inclusive process of national reconciliation,” said the petition.
  • Vietnamese PM Nguyen Tan Dung, in his capacity of Chairman of the ASEAN Summit in Hanoi, said that “[t]he elections should be free and democratic with the participation of all parties involved.”
  • US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific affairs Kurt Campbell said, “[…] in terms of the election law and our desire to see an internal dialogue between the various stakeholders about the upcoming election […] we are disappointed in the steps that had been taken.”

For more reactions click here

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This post is in: 2010 Elections

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