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Eligible voters in Kachin constituency decease dramatically

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) - Eligible voters for the coming by-election in Hpakant constituency in Kachin State for a Lower House seat now represent about one-third of the number of eligible voters in the constituency in 2010 election.
Election Commission officials  Photo: MizzimaIn the 2010 general election, there were more than 150,000 eligible voters in the constituency, according to the state Election Commission (EC). Now there are 95,137 eligible voters in the constituency, an EC official told Mizzima.
He said there would be no polling stations in ten villages in the area controlled by the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) Brigade No. 6.

The official explained the difference by saying that people whose names were not on a registered family list in the area would not have the right to vote. In Burma, people must officially register as a member of a family in a township. That’s why the number of eligible voters has decreased, according to the official.

The election official said workers were afraid to collect votes in KIO areas. “If we do, our heads will be cut off. Nobody wants to go and collect votes there.”

The ten villages are Kansi, Namhsan villages No.1, 2 and 3, Gauri, Kathang Yang, Loi Seng, and some villages in Kamaing sub-township, according to National League for Democracy candidate Dashi La Seng.
In the 2010 general election, polling stations were set up in 20 jade mining companies, but in the by-election only the Yuzana Company will have a poll station, said Dashi La Seng.
In the 2010 election, there were 110 polling stations in Hpakant Township; in the coming by-election, there will be 71 polling stations; 40 stations were abolished because of security reasons, according to officials.
Dashi La Seng said that he would ask the district Election Commission to review the list of eligible voters because the list was not correct.

NLD electoral campaign member Han Myint about 1,000 people from Hpakant Township who could vote in the 2010 general election are no longer listed as eligible voters for the by-election.

In the Hpakant Township constituency, NLD candidate Dashi La Seng, NDF candidate Bauk Ja and ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party candidate Sai Thein Tun will contest for a Lower House seat.
Bauk Ja said that many residents in Hpakant Township were not interested in the by-election because they were struggling to live day-to-day.
Last Updated ( Friday, 16 March 2012 21:45 )  

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