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Mon party eyes new name, merger

The Mon National Democratic Front will apply for official status again under a new title before merging with another Mon group in 2014.

Dr. Min Soe Linn, general secretary of the MNDF said the group has decided to register under the new name: ‘Mon Democracy Party’.

The general secretary said the move would make it convenient for a proposed merger plan with the All Mon Region Democracy Party, which competed in the 2010 elections and won 16 seats.

He said the group’s representatives are travelling to Naypyidaw in a few days to register.

“Monks suggested finding a neutral name,” said said Dr. Min Soe Linn. “Honestly, we didn’t want to abandon the MNDF because we worked under this name for over 20 years.”

The MNDF has been in talks with the AMRDP since November. The groups plan to merge their two parties together; however, they have been unable to implement their plan due to arguments concerning who will fill the party’s leaderships positions.

“We are having issues over appointing positions such as the secretary, chairperson and deputies,” said Nai Ngwe Thein, AMRDP’s chairman. “However, we understood that we cannot afford to ditch the merger.”

“To be honest, 2015 could be tough for us if we stand as two separate parties,” said the chairman. “It would make it difficult [to campaign].”

During a meeting on 22 April, the groups reached a four-point finalised agreement. The parties are set to merge by December 2014.

Representatives from the two groups, central executive committee members from the New Mon State Party and about 200 local residents and Buddhist monks attended the meeting in Mon State’s capital Moulmein.


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