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Week 19: 2010 Election Watch (13-19 July)

By Altsean-Burma  •  July 21, 2010

Developments

  • The SPDC granted permission for the pro-junta Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA) to dissolve. All USDA assets have been transferred to the Union Solidarity and Development Party, led by SPDC PM Thein Sein.
  • Democratic Party (Myanmar) Chairman Thu Wai complained about police harassment during a recent campaign trip to Rangoon Division’s Dala Township. He also said that the party had only 100 candidates who could afford to pay the 500,000 kyat (US$500) registration fee.
  • Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) leaders traveled to Naypyidaw to appeal to the SPDC Election Commission to allow the party to register and contest the elections. KSPP Chairman Tu Ja rejected as “groundless” the SPDC’s claims that the party was tied to the Kachin Independence Organization and would not be allowed to register.
  • The National Development and Peace Party filed registration papers to participate in the upcoming elections. To date, a total of 44 parties – 39 new parties and five existing parties – have filed registration applications. The SPDC Election Commission has granted final approval to 39 parties to participate in the polls.

For more developments click here

Reactions

  • Union Democratic Party Chairman Phyo Min Thein decried the use of USDA funds by the USDP, saying that the usage was “tantamount to violating electoral laws as well as other existing laws.”
  • National Democratic Force Chairman Khin Maung Swe said that “for a free and fair election to take place, the government needs to reconsider the financial requirements imposed on the parties.”
  • Kachin Independence Organization Central Committee member James Lun Dau said that the reason the SPDC Election Commission had not approved any Kachin parties was because the junta doesn’t want to “repeat the experience in the 1990 election […] so they won’t allow any party to contest that could beat them.”
  • UK Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Jeremy Browne said the UK remained “very disappointed” with the SPDC, and that the fact that 2,000 political prisoners remain in prison “makes it impossible for a meaningful election to take place in Burma.”

For more reactions click here

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This post is in: 2010 Elections

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