Low turnout mars Rangoon municipal elections

Low turnout mars Rangoon municipal elections

A lackluster campaign was followed by a record low voter turnout – 26 percent – for municipal elections in Rangoon.

Nonetheless, on Monday it was announced that candidates Htay Aung, Khin Hlaing, Aung Min and Khin Maung Tint – respectively of Rangoon’s east, west, south and north districts – have been elected to the central committee of the Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC).

Khin Hlaing, who will assume the central committee member seat for western Rangoon, said: “I plan to allocate 30 percent of public tax to municipal workers and the remaining 70 percent towards the city’s renovation.”

He promised to inspect municipal tax accounts for irregularities in a move against corruption in the YCDC.

Meanwhile, several losing candidates have complained about restrictions in the YCDC election law.

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“Both the YCDC and the [Rangoon] divisional government played unfairly,” said Win Cho, who contested the vote for western Rangoon district.

Susanna Hla Hla Soe, a losing candidate in the northern district, said restrictions on campaigning ahead of the elections “were imposed on some candidates but not on others”.

The YCDC elections were held for the first time in 60 years on 27 December. A little more than 400,000 people were eligible to vote as polls were limited to one vote per household.

 

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