USDP Re-elects Thein Sein as Chairman

By The Associated Press 17 October 2012

Burma’s ruling party has re-elected President Thein Sein as its chairman at its first convention since he took office last year.

The Union Solidarity and Development Party unanimously endorsed Thein Sein on Tuesday in the capital, Naypyidaw. The former general has instituted political and economic reforms, largely succeeding in breaking his country out of its isolation from the international community. This sets the stage for an economic take-off after decades of stultifying army rule.

The party served as the military’s proxy in the 2010 general election, when it won 883 of 1,154 parliamentary seats in polls boycotted by the pro-democracy party of Aung San Suu Kyi.

However, her National League for Democracy party virtually swept by-elections earlier this year, setting up a more serious challenge for the 2015 general election.