Aung San Suu Kyi Announces Plan to Contest in 2020 Election

By Moe Moe 10 June 2019

NAYPYITAW—President U Win Myint and State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will contest the 2020 general elections, said spokesperson of the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) U Myo Nyunt.

“The country will continue to need people of a high caliber. Yes, they will stand for the [2020] election,” U Myo Nyunt told reporters after the meeting of the central executive committee of the NLD on Saturday.

The spokesperson, however, did not mention the constituencies in which the two are preparing to contest.

Political analyst U Ye Htun suggested that the official announcement about their contest in the 2020 general elections represents the NLD’s confidence about its prospects in the next poll.

Spokesperson of the opposition Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) Daw Yin Min Myint Swe told The Irrawaddy, “They think they will win. But we believe that we will win and our party [chairperson] will become the president in 2020.”

In the 2015 general elections, President U Win Myint won a seat in the Lower House of Parliament representing Tamwe Township and was then elected as Lower House Speaker. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, representing Kawhmu Township, was elected to the Lower House of Parliament too was appointed by former president U Htin Kyaw as foreign minister. She became State Counselor once a bill to create the position was approved.

Article 64 of the Constitution forbids the state leaders from participating in the party’s activities, which means, the two are barred from conducting political campaigns for the election.

“As the State Counselor, she could visit the whole country. She can perform government’s tasks through public meetings across the country. If she solicits vote openly for the NLD, she will have to resign,” said U Ye Htun.

In the November-3 by-election, President U Win Myint cast his vote in Tamwe Constituency, and the State Counselor cast an advanced vote in Kawhmu Constituency.

U Myo Nyunt said that the ruling party will try its best to ensure a free and fair election in 2020. He denied the allegations that the Union Election Commission (UEC) is formed with a core of NLD supporters, and claimed that it is an impartial body.

The ruling party has disciplined some 45 of its own party members for certain violations of the party rules, including their arrogance in engaging with members of the public, and their interference in administration, said U Myo Nyunt.

“They will not be chosen as candidates for the next election. We will screen them carefully,” said U Myo Nyunt.

According to the UEC, the next election is scheduled to be held in November 2020.

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