Junta's election body suspends minor party; NLD and SNLD face similar prospect

Junta's election body suspends minor party; NLD and SNLD face similar prospect

The Democratic Party for a New Society (DPNS), a minority group with past affiliations to the NLD and All Burma Student’s League, has been forced to suspend operations after the party rejected the junta-controlled Union Election Commission’s (UEC) calls to investigate the party.

The UEC said in a letter to the party that the junta twice notified the DPNS to submit to financial records, but the party failed to do so. The DPNS was ordered by the junta to suspend all operations starting from May 3, except in matters related to compliance with the UEC’s investigation.

If continuing to fail to comply with the order, the party faces dissolution under Sec. 24(e) of the Registration of Political Parties Law.

The military’s UEC has repeatedly called for political parties — notably the NLD and Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD) — to submit financial reports, threatening to disband any party that refuses to comply.

The demands are seen as yet another means for the military to frame its opponents on corruption grounds.

During a conference in Naypyidaw on April 27, the UEC announced that it had granted the NLD an extended period to submit its documentation, admitting its violent crackdown on the party had put limits on its ability to comply with demands. The SNLD was granted a similar extension to June 30.

Both the NLD and SNLD have so far flatly refused to comply with the military’s demands. The Chinese government last year urged the junta not to outlaw the NLD, Burma’s leading political party.