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New Kachin party to contest in Kachin State

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – A new Kachin party with established links to the military regime and business enterprises in Kachin State is preparing to contest this year’s upcoming elections.

The Unity and Democracy Party of Kachin State (UDPKS) consists of Kachin, Shan and Burmese ethnic nationalities, being established in June in the Kachin State capital of Myitkyina.

According to locals, former pro-junta Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA) members formed the party following the urging of Ministry of Industry No. 1. Aung Thaung and Communication Minister Thein Zaw.

The party, which intends to contest all 18 townships in Kachin State, submitted its application to the Union Election Commission (UEC) on the 2nd of July and received the commission’s approval on the 16th of this month.

The 19-person party Central Executive Committee (CEC) consists of elders in Myitkyina, retired government officials and businessmen.

Party Chairman Khet Htein Nan resigned from the USDA to assume the post of Chairman in the new party.

However, Khet Htein Nan, denying allegations of receiving financial support from the military regime, says he formed the party as a necessity for the Kachin people in Kachin State after he learned an election application submitted by the Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) had not been accepted.

“All Kachin parties have not been granted registration by the UEC. I formed this party as a necessity for the Kachin people in Kachin State,” he told Mizzima.

The UDKPS is the only one of four Kachin parties to be approved by the UEC.

In the era of the Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP), Khet Htein Nan served in the BSPP Youth Wing in Ingyan Yan city, Kachin State. He is currently a Central Committee member of the Myitkyina-based Kachin Traditional Cultural Committee and owner of Aung Shwe Kabar Company, which is concerned with gold and jade mining.

Party Vice-Chairman (1) Khin Maung Lat is a retired senior assistant teacher and elder brother of Communication Minister Thein Zaw.

The party will campaign on a platform of building peace, democratic rights and development in Kahcin State, party Chairman Khet Htein Nan explained, including fulfilling the rights of the population in matters of education, health, language, culture and agriculture in addition to pursuing the eradication of narcotics.

“We will join hands with all like-minded parties which maintain a similar policy with us. We will not compete with these parties like in parliamentary democracy ages of the past. We will not spread gossip about other parties. We will not fight with them. We shall cooperate with all these parties,” furthered the Chairman.

CEC member Daw Sha Dawn Khaun Taun is the wife of famous jade mining company owner Ywap Zau Khau, while Pau Lu is a representative of Kachin religious leader Sabwe Jun, who served as the intermediary in peace talks between the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and junta and maintains links with ceasefire groups who have agreed to the Burmese military’s Border Guard Force proposal.

The other three Kachin parties denied acceptance by the UEC are the Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP), Shan State North Progressive Party and United Democracy Party (Kachin State).

The junta-backed National Unity Party (NUP) and USDP, the political spin-off of the USDA, will also contest in Kachin State.

UDPKS CEC members

1. Khet Htein Nan (Kachin) – Chairman

2. Khin Maung Latt (Burmese) – Vice-Chairman 1

3. Sai Aye Kyaw (Shan) – Vice-Chairman 2

4. Phau Lar Gam Phan (Kachin) – Secretary

5. Sha Daung Khaun Taung – member

6. Lawyer Labya Gam (Kachin) – member

7. Pau Lu (Kachin) – member

8. Phone Ran Ku (Rawan) – member

9. Yein Saun (Lashi) – member

10. Inn Lan Zau Khau (Kachin) – member

11. Mar Khau (Lisu) – member

12. Lawyer Dwe Bu (Kachin) – member

13. Win Myint (Burmese) – member

14. Kyaw Nyin (Burmese) – member

15. Ah Lay Par (Lisu) – member

16. Teacher Daw Jar Nan (Kachin) – member

17. Kan Sii Tuu Aung (Kachin) - member
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 27 July 2010 13:20 )  
The Kachin’s last stand
Since October this year, Burma has been in a state of civil war, with fighting between Burmese military and armed ethnic rebels. The ruling junta started a crackdown on these armed groups.

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