NLD statement condemns election plans

Feb 20, 2008 (DVB), The National League for Democracy has criticised the government's plans for a referendum in May followed by general elections in 2010 when the results of the 1990 elections have still not been recognised.

In a statement issued on Monday, the NLD recalled the promises made by the State Law and Order Restoration Council, the SPDC's former name, when it took power in 1988, namely to hold multiparty elections and return power to the winning party, and noted that the SPDC had yet to fulfil these promises.

The junta's announcement of a referendum on their proposed constitution also runs counter to claims made by the military commander-in-chief that the constitution would be written by elected people's parliament representatives, the statement said.

U Thein Nyunt, a member of the NLD Information Committee, said the ruling junta has a responsibility to honour its earlier commitments to the people of Burma.

"The government is preparing to hold a national referendum without having presented the constitution to the people yet," he said.

"Besides, this draft constitution was not written by the elected members of the people’s parliament and there has been no opportunity for the people of the country and all relevant parties to participate in its drafting."

U Thein Nyunt said that the SPDC's announcement of another election in 2010 when they had still not recognised the results of the 1990 election undermined their credibility.

"If the SPDC has decided to ignore the results of the 1990 elections, it shows that they disrespect the will of the people of Burma who participated in the voting, and that disrespect is a violation of democratic principles and human rights," he said.

"The NLD would not accept such a situation as our main agenda is to see democracy and human rights in Burma."

Reporting by Khin Maung Soe Min

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