Myanmar junta’s Union Election Commission (UEC) and 37 political parties that have registered for a proposed general election met in Naypyitaw on Monday to discuss the opening of party offices.
Under the junta’s Political Parties Registration Law, parties running in a general election have 180 days to open offices in at least 50 percent of Myanmar’s townships after their registration is approved.
More than 60 parties have applied for UEC registration and only 37 have been approved.
Parties contesting in a single region or state are required to open at least five township offices.
The military proxy Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and National Unity Party will purportedly open offices across Myanmar soon and the Phalon-Sawaw Democratic Party, New Democracy Party in Kachin State and Myanmar People’s Democratic Party will reportedly set up regional and state offices.
The National Democratic Front led by U Khin Maung Swe, who is on the central advisory board of the regime’s governing body, the State Administration Council, the People’s Party led by 88 Generation student leader U Ko Ko Gyi and the People’s Pioneer Party led by the junta’s hotels and tourism minister Daw Thet Thet Khine are expected to run nationally and open party offices soon. The Arakan Front Party led by Dr Aye Maung is only due to run in Rakhine State.
The USDP is tipped to win any election that is held. The military-drafted 2008 Constitution also guarantees 25 percent of seats for military officers.
Junta boss Min Aung Hlaing has promised a general election after a census is completed next October.
A total of 63 parties have registered with the UEC. In the 2020 general election, 87 of 91 registered parties ran and 19 won parliamentary seats.
The National League for Democracy (NLD), which won the 2020 election, and the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD) have been dissolved after failing to re-register with the UEC. The SNLD came third after the NLD and USDP in 2020.
The regime has detained 1,769 NLD members, including party chair Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, at least 97 members have been killed and 373 have had their homes sealed off, the party said. NLD offices have reportedly endured 160 arson attacks, break-ins and explosions.
Any election held by the junta has already been universally dismissed as neither free nor fair.
Source: The Irrawaddy