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Burma’s president discusses tribunal with parliamentary speakers: report

Rangoon (Mizzima) – Sessions of the Lower House and Upper House of the Burmese Parliament were cancelled on Thursday to allow the country’s three top leaders to discuss the Constitutional Tribunal issue, according to parliamentary sources.

Burmese President Thein Sein Photo: president's websiteThe three top leaders met for about one hour in the Presidential Palace in Naypyitaw.

Lower House MP Ye Tun told Mizzima that he believed President Thein Sein discussed the issue with Lower House Speaker Shwe Mann and Upper House Speaker Khin Aung Myint, following discussions in Parliament recently to try to impeach the tribunal members.
Earlier, the Constitutional Tribunal issued an opinion that the committees and commissions formed by the Parliament are not “union-level” bodies, prompting talk of impeachment proceedings against the nine-member tribunal in the Lower House.

Upper House MP Phone Myint Aung told Mizzima that Upper House MPs would submit a proposal on Friday to impeach the tribunal members.

Lower House Speaker Shwe Mann has urged Thein Sein to put the tribunal members under pressure in order that they should resign voluntarily, but he rejected the request. The Constitutional Tribunal in a press conference last week said that they did not commit any wrong doing, and they would continue to carry out their duties under the Constitution.
Meanwhile, President Thein Sein advised MPs that the tribunal ruling was carried out under the law and it would stand.  If MPs were dissatisfied with the tribunal, they could try to amend the Constitution, he said.
Observers said the 2008 Constitution does not say whether the committees formed by the Parliament are “union-level” bodies or not, but according to the legal provisions relating to the two parliamentary houses, they are defined as “union-level” bodies.
Last week, Mizzima reported that the dispute began the third week of March when the tribunal ruling was met with disbelief by many members of Parliament.

The tribunal is made up of nine judges, most of whom are academics or legal experts.

Three of the judges were selected by Thein Sein, three by Shwe Mann, and three by the speaker of the Upper House, Khin Aung Myint.
Last Updated ( Thursday, 23 August 2012 17:07 )  

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