NLD doubts junta's promise to transfer power

Mar 31, 2008 (DVB), The National League for Democracy has said it does not trust promises made by senior general Than Shwe in his Armed Forces Day address to hand over power after elections in 2010.

The Burmese junta leader said on 27 March that the completion of the new constitution was part of a process of transition from military rule.

"Moreover, as the New Constitution has already been drafted, it will be put to a National Referendum in forthcoming May and subsequently the Multi-party Democratic General Elections will follow in 2010 in line with the provisions of the new Constitution," he said.

"The Tatmadaw Government will then be in a position to transfer the State power."

NLD spokesperson U Nyan Win said the party had learned from experience not to believe promises of democratic transition.

"It is quite hard to believe, based on our experience, [Than Shwe's] promise to hold elections and then hand power to the people," Nyan Win said.

"This promise had been made by the leader of the SLORC before, and it has still not come true. And now the SPDC leader is making the same promise yet again, but this time we have already learnt that we cannot trust them so easily," he said.

"We are not going to do our work based upon the promise made. We are just continuing with what we were doing."

Nyan Win said NLD leaders are currently discussing whether to call on people to boycott the national referendum or vote No, and will bring their decision to the people soon.

Reporting by Htet Aung Kyaw

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