USDP Slammed for Misuse of Ethnic Party’s Signature on Joint Statement

By Htun Htun 26 January 2017

RANGOON — The Ta’ang National Party (TNP) slammed the former-ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) on Wednesday for misuse of its name in a so-called joint statement.

On Tuesday, the USDP released a statement with 14 other political parties which criticized the National League for Democracy (NLD)-led government for its handling of the Arakan State issue and calling for a National Defence and Security Council meeting.

The statement also called for clarification on the government’s plan to accept Muslim Rohingya back into Burma who had previously fled the country.

The joint statement was signed by leaders of 15 political parties including the TNP’s central executive committee (CEC) member U Tun Kyaing.

In its Wednesday statement, however, the TNP said there is no CEC member named U Tun Kyaing, nor did the party sign the statement.

“Our party representative did attend the discussion,” said Mai Ohn Khaing, joint general secretary of the TNP. “But, we did not vest him with the authority to make decisions, and he did not sign the statement.

“We have no U Tun Kyaing, the one who supposedly signed the statement, in our party,” he added.

The TNP’s statement strongly condemned the abuse of the party’s name, demanded that the TNP be removed from the joint statement, and stated that the joint statement does not represent the party’s views.

It strongly urged that similar misuse should not happen again.

The Irrawaddy contacted USDP officials but was not able to get a comment about the case.

The joint statement also criticized establishment of the Arakan State Advisory Commission and the NLD-led government’s appointment of national security advisor.

The statement followed the USDP’s discussion on state security and rule of law in Rangoon on Monday.

Other parties that signed the joint statement include the National Unity Party, the National Development Party, the Democratic Party (Myanmar), the National Political Alliance League, the New National Democracy Party, the Modern People Party, the Kayin State Democracy and Development Party, the Myanmar National Congress, the Rakhine State National United Party, the Wun Thar Nu Democratic Party, the People Democracy Party, the Peace for Diversity Party, and the Inn National Development Party.