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NUP to contest election with fresh blood

Rangoon (Mizzima) – The National Unity Party (NUP) will contest the 2010 election with new blood rather than elders, party Joint Secretary Khin Maung Gyi said at a press conference this morning.

“It’s time to induct fresh blood into our party. We will contest the election with youths,” Khin Maung Gyi said at the 21st party founding anniversary held at its headquarters on University Avenue.

NUP has shortlisted 500 youths across the country who will contest in about 300 constituencies.

But Khin Maung Gyi did not disclose what role the elder leaders will play.

“The Divisional Party Committees concerned will decide which constituencies and townships they would contest. But we can say we will mainly contest in townships in proper Burma (plain areas) rather than in areas inhabited by ethnic nationalities,” a CEC member and political movement committee secretary Thein Tun said.

Among the 10 registered political parties, like the main opposition NLD, NUP has branch offices across the country, but it has been silenced for the last two decades.

After the 1988 popular uprising, late dictator Ne Win’s ‘Burma Socialist Programme Party’ was transformed to NUP.

Thein Tun claimed that they had three million party sympathisers who would vote in the election for their party which believed in the Burmese way to Socialism.

“The official party membership was 550,000 when political parties were banned from doing party organizational work in 1992 by the government. Now these new forces are being organized as our core force. We can issue party membership cards to these people only when the election law is announced,” Thein Tun said.

When asked to comment on the 2008 constitution,  which is largely controversial among the international community, former Trade Minister Khin Maung Gyi replied, “We have no comment on the constitution as it has been approved by over 90 per cent of ‘YES’ votes. The constitution has an essential and important role in all countries”.

He also said that they would forge an alliance with any party, which wanted it if they had the same policy and attitude as that of the NUP.

The parties formed in the pre-2010 election period are the Democratic Party led by U Thu Wei, Independent Candidates Network, Union Democratic Alliance led by veteran ethnic Shan politician U Shwe Ohn, some Third Force organizations, Kachin State Progressive Party, and ceasefire New Mon Land Party.

The military regime has announced the election would be held in 2010 and under the controversial constitution there would be 498 constituencies in Burma.

But the NLD, which won a landslide victory in the 1990 elections, but were not allowed to form the government and is still banned from undertaking party activities, demanded the regime make amendments in the constitution.

Last Updated ( Friday, 25 September 2009 20:01 )  

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