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Four dissolved ethnic parties to re-register


Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – Four well-known ethnic political parties that were dissolved in the 1990 general election will re-register to run candidates, according to party officials.
 
Shan Nationalities League for Democracy party chairman Khun Tun Oo. Photo: FacebookOfficials from the Shan National League for Democracy (SNLD), Arakan League for Democracy (ALD), Mon National Democratic Front (MNDF) and Zomi National Congress (ZNC) said they will re-register because the government amended the political party registration law and released political prisoners including Khun Tun Oo, the SNLD leader.
 
The SNLD, led by Khun Tun Oo, was automatically dissolved following the 2010 political party registration law; the remaining three parties were dissolved in 1993 when former General Khin Nyunt was in power. All four parties objected to the 2008 Constitution and the 2010 electoral laws and decided not to re-register and contest in the 2010 general election.
 
SNLD spokesman Sai Late told Mizzima, “We give first priority to re-register the party and top priority for the health of party chairman [Khun Tun Oo] and secretary [Sai Nyunt Tin]. Presently, we are holding a party central executive meeting. It’s very likely that we will register.” However, it’s not certain if the party will contest in the April 1 by-election, he said.
 
The SNLD won the largest number of parliamentary seats in Shan State in the 1990 general election and won second place in the whole country.
 
The ALD, the third largest winning party in the 1990 general election, will register the party in early February but it will not contest in the by-election. It will conduct activities regarding national affairs, education, health and farmers’ affairs, according to ALD leader Aye Tha Aung.
 
“The government amended some electoral laws. Moreover, politicians like Khun Tun Oo and Min Ko Naing whom we urged the government to release have freedom. That’s why we’ve decided to re-register the party,” Aye Tha Aung told Mizzima.
 
Similarly, the MNDF and ZNC plan to re-register in February or after the by-election, according to party leaders.
 
“This month ethnic leaders including Khun Tun Oo will hold a meeting. Then, we will register the parties. Under the current circumstances, it is unlikely to contest in the coming by-election,” MNDF Vice Chairman Nai Ngwe Thein said.

The MNDF was formed on October 11, 1988; five out of 19 MNDF candidates won parliamentary seats in the 1990 general election.
 
ZNC chairman Pu Cin Sian Thang told Mizzima, “We haven’t held a meeting with party members. I think they will agree in order to get a chance to conduct activities legally.”
 
On Wednesday, a meeting between former MPs of 1990 general election was held at Khun Tun Oo’s home and he suggested the political parties re-register.
 
The United Nationalities Alliance [UNA], a coalition of 11 ethnic political parties that contested in the 1990 general election, will hold a meeting in January.
 
The parties planning to register said the UNA and the Committee Representing the People's Parliament members would not object to their plan to re-register because of Burma’s current political atmosphere.
 
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