INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP – NEW BRIEFING: The Myanmar Elections
Inordinate delay by the Burmese Election Commission (EC) to grant approval to the Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) led by former Vice-Chairman of ‘Kachin Independence Organization’ (KIO), has considerably delayed organizational work.
“We are awaiting party registration from the Commission to start organizational work. We feel that there is deliberate delay in granting registration. Many other parties have been approved,” KSPP Chairman Dr. Tu Ja said.
KSPP applied for registration to the Election Commission on April 5 but has not been approved though over 20 parties which applied later have got theirs.
The Election Commission has not yet permitted the KSPP, Shan State (North) Progressive Party, United Democracy Party (Kachin State) and Ethnic Nationalities Development Party to float their parties.
The military regime announced that the EC had granted permission to 27 out of a total of 31 applicants till May 6.
EC Chairman Thein Soe invited KSPP’s four-member delegation led by Chairman Dr. Tu Ja and Secretary Tu Yaw to his office in Nay Pyi Taw on May 7 and told them to wait, KSPP Secretary Tu Yaw said.
“They told us not to worry about permission. It will be certainly granted. Don’t worry, please wait, he said. They requested us to wait as they are still negotiating with KIO,” he added.
The KSPP, the National Unity Party (NUP), Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and the United Democracy Party (Kachin State) are contesting the election.
Like the KSPP, the United Democracy Party (Kachin State) has not been approved but NUP and USDP led by serving Prime Minister Thein Sein are into organizational work and electioneering in Kachin State, local residents said.
Meanwhile, KIO, which is still refusing to transform its armed force into the Burmese Army controlled Border Guard Force (BGF) is providing military training in Mai Ja Yan and nearby villages in areas controlled by KIO’s 3rd Brigade.
Similarly KIO General Secretary Dr. La Ja, Capt. Zau Bauk Thang and Capt. Bran Taung organized a mass rally in Mai Ja Yan on the Sino-Burma border yesterday, it is learnt.
KIO dispatched its reply to the junta on April 22 refusing to accept BGF. It rejected it again when they met junta’s Communication Postal and Telegraph Minister Brig. Gen. Thein Zaw, Northern Command Commander Maj. Gen. Soe Win, Auditing General in Nay Pyi Taw Maj. Gen. Lun Maung, No. 1 Industry Minister Aung Thaung and Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Brig. Gen. Phone Swe on April 28.