Thursday, September 21, 2017

NLD opts out of national election

Senior members of the National League for Democracy, the country’s most high-profile political group, have voted not to register the party for this year’s election.

The decision effectively marks the end of the NLD as a legal political entity. Under election laws released last month, existing parties had until May 7 to submit an application to contest this year’s general election. Those that do not submit an application will be dissolved, with assets coming under state control.

The decision was made on March 29 at the party’s Shwegondine headquarters. In attendance at the meeting were senior members representing townships across all states and divisions.

“Most members do not want to register and contest the election, that’s why we’ve decided not to register,” NLD spokesperson U Khin Maung Shwe said on April 1.

U Khin Maung Shwe said the party had not yet considered what direction it would take when it is dissolved but did not rule out the possibility of NLD members forming new political groups that would contest the election.

“I can’t know the will of individual members,” he said.