Saturday, June 14, 2014

ANP calls efforts to introduce PR system dishonest

The leader of the Arakan National Party (ANP) Aye Thar Aung has criticised the recent moves to change Myanmar’s electoral system to one of proportional representation (PR).

“At a time when the country should be striving for democracy, some are working to change to another system instead of the present election system which has no problems. This isn’t honest,” he said.

Khin Wai Kyi of the National Democratic Force Party submitted a proposal in parliament to introduce a PR system. The proposal was met with objections from military representatives, ethnic parties and the National League for democracy (NLD). But representatives from the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) have seconded the proposal which was approved on June 11.

Most criticised the fact that introducing a complex new system at such an early stage of Myanmar’s reforms will only confuse the electorate. Many see this as a way for the ruling party to weaken opposition parties ahead of next year’s general election.

“The important things are to let democracy flourish, to reach a ceasefire and work for peace, and to build federal system together with ethnic groups. We have many problems to face. But now instead of doing these important things, some are trying to change the election system. In my opinion, I smell something fishy going on,” said Aye Thar Aung.

The ANP will discuss this matter at a party meeting on June 15. He will also plan to explain to Rakhine nationals what the issue is about.

___ EMG
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