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  • » 09/08/2015, 00.00

    MYANMAR

    Election campaign begins with video message from Aung San Suu Kyi

    Francis Khoo Thwe

    Election campaign begins two months before the vote on 8 November. More than 30 million citizens to the polls. The opposition leader post a message on social networks, advocating a "real change in the political and administrative" structure. An invitation to the international community to monitor the elections and the results.

    Yangon (AsiaNews) - In a message on social networks calling on the international community to ensure that the elections bring "a real change in the political and administrative life" of the nation, the Burmese opposition leader has launched the election campaign for the November 8 vote next .

    Today, two months before the general election, the challenge between Aung San Suu Kyi and the Burmese generals, now in power, has begun. Compared to the 2010 elections, boycotted by the National League for Democracy (NLD), the former Burma has embarked on a path of reform that has brought some changes, although the process of democratization has suffered a sharp slowdown in recent months.

    There remain some significant changes, one of which the Nobel Laureate herself had often called for. Five years ago, when she was still under house arrest, Aung San Suu Kyi said she hoped - one day - to be able to open a Twitter account and talk with the outside world. Today, kicking off the official election campaign the "Lady" used herFacebook, page, with a video message in English in which she spoke of her  hope of free and fair elections and real progress in the country.

    There will be over 30 million citizens eligible to vote, many of them for the first time, the first in which the main political will take part.  These include Suu Kyi’s NLD, which had won the 1990 elections, but was never recognized by the generals. There are approximately between 90 political parties and movements of various kinds and extraction in the race, a number unthinkable a few years ago in the South-east Asian nation ruled by a strict military dictatorship.

    The newly elected Parliament will have the task of electing the new President of Myanmar, a position the Noble Laureate cannot aspire to, because of a norm contra personam that excludes from the race. However, the main favorite for the final victory remains the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), a branch of the former junta, which together with the 25% of which is reserved for military law somewhere Assembly, controls the political life and institutional framework of the country.

    In her video message,  Aung San Suu Kyi stressed that the vote of 8 November was a "crossroads" in the history of Myanmar. "For the first time in decades - she adds - our people will have a real chance to bring about real change. This is a chance that we cannot afford to take".  The "Lady" then invites the international community to monitor the voting process and make sure that "our people feel that their will is respected" and that it is a harbinger of "a real political and administrative change ".

    Finally, the NLD leader said she hoped that the result "will be accepted by all" and that is why there is a "real need for everyone’s help" " in the weeks following the vote. "We hope that the whole world understands how important it is for us to have free and fair elections". Following Aung San Suu Kyi also posted a message in Burmese, calling on voters to think about the future generations on their way to the polls, adding that her party will satisfy their desire for change.

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    See also

    23/06/2011 MYANMAR - UNITED STATES
    Aung San Suu Kyi appeals to the U.S. Congress, for human rights in Myanmar
    A video message to Congress in which the Nobel Laureate appeals for help in the liberation of political prisoners and an investigation into abuses in the country. It is the first, historic speech by the opposition leader to Americans politicians. The birth of the UN Commission hampered by Asian nations, including China.

    26/03/2012 MYANMAR
    A sick Aung San Suu Kyi suspends her election campaign
    The 'Lady' falls ill on her way to the Mergui Islands. The authorities denied her and her people the use of a larger ferry-type vessel, forcing them to make a more exhausting trip on three smaller boats, which made the journey's duration three times as long.

    27/03/2008 MYANMAR
    Underground campaign against junta’s new constitution
    The junta is urging the population to approve the constitution, which legitimises its hold on power, with promises of democracy for 2010. In the meantime it is cracking down on all forms of dissent. For their part pro-democracy activists are engaged in an underground campaign for a No vote.

    30/01/2012 MYANMAR
    Tens of thousands attend Aung San Suu Kyi’s first election rally outside Yangon
    The opposition leader on a visit to Tavoy, a town on the coast where she held a rally ahead of the vote on April 1. The Nobel Laureate calls for a "free and fair" vote and invites the population to ensure no undue pressure. Slogans and chants ring out for the "Lady".

    10/03/2010 MYANMAR
    ”Ad personam" law excludes Aung San Suu Kyi from 2010 elections
    The military leadership has promulgated a law that prevents the candidacy of those who have criminal convictions. It is included in the Political Parties Registration Law, which governs the vote. The parties have 60 days to register. Elections a pretext to strengthen the power of the dictatorship.



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