Burma: Suu Kyi’s party wins landslide in by-election – What will be the next?By Zin Linn Apr 02, 2012 2:21AM UTC
At last, Burma’s Nobel laureate and democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi has made a landslide victory in the Sunday by-election. Even though some members of the archrival party tried to rig the vote, they could not cheat as the voters were so active and alert.
The National League for Democracy’s (NLD) victory would make a major landmark in the country where the military dictatorship has ruled for five decades. It would not only make the major honor for the NLD’s political mission but also spotlight the vital role of Aung San Suu Kyi who had been locked up in her lakeside residence for two decades by the previous military regime.
Over a thousand supporters of Suu Kyi and her party were gathering in front of the NLD headquarters claiming and hailing the victory of the National League for Democracy in Burma’s former capital, Rangoon since the news of voting results were informing on a digital billboard there.
In the afternoon of the polling day, there were complaints by several voters that they couldn’t mark ticking on their ballot papers as the sheets were coated with wax at the box of National League for Democracy. Voters attempted repeatedly to make the ticking mark. Afterward there were two to three scratches. When some voters asked the polling station staff for a new ballot paper, they were denied.
However, the news emerged through Facebook and Twitter that the NLD’s chairperson Suu Kyi was leading 65 percent of the vote in 82 of 129 polling booths in her constituency. Yangon Press International (YPI) and the Shwe Myit Ma Kha Media Group reported that NLD’s candidates won nearly 40 constituencies, according to unofficial vote counting results.
After the event of Sunday night, NLD personnel were vigilantly proud of the victory. Believing themselves to be succeeding in 44 constituencies in the remarkable by-elections, this promotes Aung San Suu Kyi as vital champion for a free Burma.
According to Reuters News, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has given cautious support to a by-election in Burma (Myanmar) that has given pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi a seat in the lower house of parliament.
“The United States congratulates the people who participated, many for the first time, in the campaign and election process,” Clinton said on Sunday following a meeting on the Syrian conflict in Istanbul, Reuters News said.
Although Suu Kyi’s party won 44 seats out of 660 lower house, it may not be enough to pressure the government’s ruling party. Nevertheless, if Suu Kyi possesses a seat in parliament, it will provide the opposition parties a way to attempt to amend the undemocratic clauses of the 2008 constitution.
On the other hand, analysts deem Burma’s new quasi-civilian government’s wishes for Suu Kyi to get a seat in parliament so as to persuade the international community to honor its reform process. Thein Sein government also knows very well that without Suu Kyi’s recommendation it could not afford to lift the economic sanctions imposed by the Western democracies due to the country’s bad human rights records.
After voting results showed the NLD’s big triumph, the party’s chairperson, Suu Kyi released a kindly statement intended for all NLD candidates and supporters to be polite in their success, and to be geared up to cooperate in the company of other opposition parties and the ruling administration.
According to the Union Election Commission, the official election results will be declared within a week. So far, people cannot enjoy their happiness for victory of Aung San Suu Kyi’s party because of the past experiences in 1990 and 2010 respectively. They have to wait and see the UEC’s official announcements worriedly. No one can dare say that there will not be any alteration with the results.