USDP Will Disclose Wealth if NLD Does: USDP Secretary

By Pe Thet Htet Khin 12 May 2017

NAYPYIDAW — The Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) will disclose its assets if the government and lawmakers of the National League for Democracy (NLD) party also disclose their personal financial holdings, said U Tin Aung Chit, USDP secretary.

“Will the organizations, parties, and government members who were vocal [in demanding the previous USDP-led government disclose its holdings] now disclose their assets? If so, we will not hesitate to disclose our own,” he said, at a press conference at the USDP headquarters in Naypyidaw on Friday.

As no existing law requires lawmakers to disclose their personal financial holdings, the NLD has no plan for financial disclosure, U Nyan Win, an NLD central executive committee member, told The Irrawaddy.

“No law prescribes the disclosure of assets. According to the law, lawmakers have to file asset reports, which are retained. Why should we disclose these? There should be a reason, but as of now, I see no reason,” said U Nyan Win.

When The Irrawaddy asked what the NLD would do if the public wanted it to disclose its assets, U Nyan Win said: “People have to demand what is in line with the law.”

Speaker of Burma’s Lower House U Win Myint earlier said that Parliament would not disclose the personal assets of lawmakers in consideration of their security.

USDP officials also denied the party’s involvement in the alleged embezzlement of public funds by former divisional governments in Magwe and Irrawaddy divisions.

USDP spokesperson Dr. Nandar Hla Myint said punitive actions could be taken against members of the former government if they violated the law.

“Taking advantage of these cases, groups that are lobbying against us have called our party a thief. It tarnishes the image of our party to muddle it with individual party members. This not only harms the dignity of the party but also affects its future. We deny any involvement in these cases,” said Dr. Nandar Hla Myint.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.