Election Commission ‘designates’ constituencies

The government announced on Wednesday that the Election Commission (EC) has designated constituencies for this year’s planned election.

The state newspaper the New Light of Myanmar announced that further details would follow in special ‘supplements’ of daily newspapers.

There will be 330 constituencies nationwide, with a further 110 seats reserved for unelected members of the military in the ‘lower house’ or the some what inaccurately named Pyithu Hluttaw (People’s Parliament).

An Upper house named the ‘House of Nationalities’ or Amyotha Hluttaw will comprise 224 seats with 168 elected representative and 56 unelected members of the military.

Htun Aung Kyaw of the New Era People’s Party told DVB that he knew little about the latest developments, but suspects that the polling date would be announced soon.

Meanwhile Prime Minister elect, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was quoted by AP stating that she believes the lack of a date for the election was because; “”there could be some problems among them [the military junta].”

The quote came after her lawyers met her at her house where she is being held because an American intruder broke in, which conveniently extended the length of her detention to beyond the election.

National League for Democracy (NLD) member and Suu Kyi representative, Nyan Win told AP meanwhile that she had warned that; “No system will work without any rule of law.”

This follows a long string of allegations surrounding the Union Solidarity Development Party (USDP), widely seen as the military party and its pre election tactics.

Parties will be allowed to own business’ which meant that the USDP’s precursor, the Union Solidarity Development Association (USDA) was gifted a number of state assets in recent privatisation drives by the military government, will simply transfer these assets to the new party which will be headed by current Prime Minister Thein Sein, giving them an overwhelming financial advantage.

As a result they have allegedly been able to offer soft loans to potential members and have been using their connections to black mail others.

Whilst further ominous signs became apparent this week as prospective candidates pleaded with the EC to stop handing over their details, which had been submitted to the EC, to the military intelligence, citing fears of harassment.

Campaigning laws were released in June and were similarly archaic and repressive banning as they did chanting slogans, campaigning in public or giving speeches that ‘can harm dignity or morality’.

Additional reporting by Ahunt Phone Myat

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