U Win Htein: Comments on Military Spreading Rumors A Slip of the Tongue

By Htet Naing Zaw 8 May 2017

NAYPYIDAW —The National League for Democracy (NLD) spokesperson U Win Htein said his comments that the country’s military may be involved in spreading rumors to destabilize the NLD government were a slip of the tongue.

“I blurted it out, I did not accuse anybody. If I made an accusation, it is my fault. But it was not intended as an accusation,” he said at a press briefing after the NLD’s central executive committee met in Naypyidaw on Saturday.

His comments came after the Burma Army’s Information Team issued a press release on Friday to condemn U Win Htein’s comments that the military may be behind rumors regarding the resignation of President U Htin Kyaw.

“I don’t mind if they [the Burma Army] can’t stand it, it is just like being hit by a flower,” he said regarding the press release, adding that the military had not yet contacted him.

At a media briefing last Thursday, U Win Htein said: “It’s difficult to say [who is behind the U Htin Kyaw rumor] as we are flooded with information. It’s hard to guess if it was spread by the USDP [Union Solidarity and Development Party] or some military organizations, or some IT experts who hate us.”

The USDP also released a statement on Saturday, condemning U Win Htein’s comments implicating the USDP.

“In briefing the media as the NLD’s representative, U Win Htein accused the USDP based on pessimism and suspicion, and this harms the USDP’s dignity, and may also impact the national reconciliation process being carried out by the government,” the statement read.

The NLD was blaming other parties and organizations for its failures in security, the economy, and national reconciliation, according to the statement.