This Week in Parliament (May 30--June 3)

By The Irrawaddy 4 June 2016

Although the Union Election Commission (UEC) said nothing about errors in the 2015 nationwide voter lists, in response to a question raised in the Lower House about such discrepancies, the UEC replied that it planned to conduct door-to-door voter registration to compile accurate lists for the next election. The pilot project will take place in Rangoon’s Kyauktada Township.

The Upper House approved the draft laws to amend the Lower House Election Law, Upper House Election Law and State Parliament Election Law, all of which the NLD previously decried for going against democratic practices. The Lower House had already approved the draft laws, after each was amended three times.

May 31 (Tuesday)

The Union Parliament recorded the appointment of Maung Maung Win as the deputy planning and finance minister.

Zaw Win from Htantabin constituency replaced Khin Maung Win from Lanmadaw constituency as a member of the Union Parliament Joint Bill Committee.

In the Lower House, the Ministry of Electric Power and Energy explained its plans to address frequent power outages and the electricity supply in Burma. Lower House Speaker Win Myint said the ministry may have noticed cartoons in the media about the outages, and urged it to give due attention to the issue.

The Upper House approved the proposed amendments made to the Peaceful Assembly and Procession Law by the Lower House. The draft law was sent to the Lower House for approval.

The Upper House approved the appointment of Naw Mya Sae as the chair of its Education Promotion Committee. The post was previously held by Win Myat Aye, who currently serves as the Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement—a committee on which Naw Mya Sae also previously served as a member.

June 1 (Wednesday)

 The Lower House received the draft laws to amend the Lower House Election Law, Upper House Election Law and State Parliament Election Law sent back by the Upper House. Both houses have now approved the draft laws and the Union Parliament will soon announce the official approval.

The Upper House approved draft laws to annul the Rangoon City Development Law and Mandalay City Development Law.

June 2 (Thursday)

In the Lower House, lawmaker Pe Than representing Myebon Township asked if the new government planned to define the terms “political offense” and “political prisoner.” Deputy Minister for Home Affairs Maj-Gen Aung Soe replied that the ministry has no plan to define them but he will report to the minister, seek the government’s statement and deliver the reply to Parliament.

June 3 (Friday)

The Upper House approved the draft law to amend the Ward or Village Tract Administration Law. The law has been amended twice already.  The colonial-era law requires citizens to report overnight guests to local authorities. With the draft law approved, such reporting will no longer be required.