NCUB to form new government in exile

Jan 2, 2009 (DVB), The National Council of the Union of Burma has announced its plans to establish a new government in exile in advance of the Burmese military regime's planned 2010 election.

The NCUB, an umbrella organisation of exiled opposition groups based on the Thai-Burma border, plans to form a united parliament comprising elected members of parliament and ethnic nationalities.

NCUB spokesperson Myint Thein said the move was a rejection of the 2008 constitution and the planned 2010 elections, which he said would validate long-term military rule.

"We will form a united parliament and from there, we will form a rival national unity government to respond to the current situation," Myint Thein said.

"[As well as reaffirming the 1990 election results,] we will also be fighting against military rule by uniting legal and armed ethnic groups, pro-democracy groups and other organisations to form a legal de facto parliament," he said.

"From there we will form a rival national unity government that practices good governance in order to carry out our intentions."

Myint Thein said the new government would campaign for a federal system of government in Burma.

"We oppose the 2010 election. We also oppose the 2008 constitution. We support the results of the 1990 election," Myint Thein said.

"The main aim of the NCUB government is to build a federal system that specifically guarantees equality and the right to self-legislation for ethnic nationalities."

The new government could present a challenge to the National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma, the US-based government in exile led by prime minister Dr Sein Win.

There have been persistent rumours of tensions between NCUB and NCGUB in the past, but representatives of both organisations have insisted that they are united in their aims.

When asked where the NCGUB fitted in with the new plans, Myint Thein said the new government would work with the NCGUB.

"We are in a position to deal with problems step by step," Myint Thein said.

"We are aiming to form a rival government that can achieve national unity and oppose military rule in practice," he continued.

"In order for that to happen, as we will be formed on the basis of the 1990 election, we will systematically negotiate and work with the NCGUB and any other organisation."

Sein Win, prime minister of the NCGUB, said he did not yet know the details of the NCUB statement.

"We don’t know how they are going to move forward with their activities," he said.

"[The NCGUB] was formed on the basis of the results of the 1990 election and we will continue with the policies of the NLD, the CRPP and so on in the future," he went on.

"There will be a meeting of MPs and a prime ministerial election in Ireland in mid-January."

Reporting by Htet Aung Kyaw

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